Newly discovered planetary system named after famous beer brand

Newly discovered planetary system named after famous beer brand

The discovery of seven Earth-sized planets orbiting a nearby star dubbed TRAPPIST-1 isn’t new. However, many people remain unaware of the fact that new planetary system has been named after the discoverers’ favorite beer.

Trappist has been associated with the popular brand of monastic beer that stemmed from Belgium many centuries ago. The scientists not only named the star after the beer but also nicknamed the planets orbiting it.

Each of the TRAPPIST-1 star’s seven exoplanets, the planets outside our own solar planet, has been named something coinciding with a Trappist brewery, such as Orval, Rochefort and Westvleteren.

Many scientists believe that the seven Earth-sized exoplanets many have life-supporting conditions, and the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) could help determine that.

Hannah Wakeford, of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, said, “These are the best Earth-sized planets for the James Webb Space Telescope to characterize, perhaps for its whole lifetime. The Webb telescope will increase the information we have about these planets immensely.”

Scheduled to be launched in 2018, the (JWST) will likely be able to detect methane, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, oxygen or water on the exoplanets, helping scientists to determine if the distant worlds really have life-supporting conditions.

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