National Centre of Competence in Research PlanetS
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Celebrating two decades of SPHERE challenges and achievements

Celebrating two decades of SPHERE challenges and achievements

Reaching new heights with 100 consortium publications including the early exoplanet demographics release. The SPHERE (Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exo-planet REsearch) planet imager(1), currently installed and operating at the ESO Very Large Telescope in Chile, aims at imaging and characterizing giant exoplanets and planet-forming disks around stars close to the Sun. This project represents an incredible scientific, […]

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A new way of forming planets

A new way of forming planets

Scientists of the Universities of Zurich and Cambridge, associated with the Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research PlanetS, suggest a new explanation for the abundance in intermediate-mass exoplanets – a long-standing puzzle of Astronomy. In the last 25 years, scientists have discovered over 4000 planets beyond the borders of our solar system. From relatively […]

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CHEOPS finds unique planetary system

CHEOPS finds unique planetary system

The CHEOPS space telescope detects six planets orbiting the star TOI-178. Five of the planets are in a harmonic rhythm despite very different compositions – a novelty. CHEOPS is a joint mission by the European Space Agency (ESA) and Switzerland, under the aegis of the University of Bern in collaboration with the University of Geneva. […]

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The importance of theory in exoplanetary science

The importance of theory in exoplanetary science

Scientists at the University of Zurich associated with the National Center of Competence in Research PlanetS reveal considerable uncertainties in the theoretical understanding of giant gas planets. This emphasizes the importance of further developing theoretical aspects of exoplanetary characterization. Planets that orbit other stars are very far away. Even the ones close enough for instruments […]

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How our planets were formed

How our planets were formed

Terrestrial planets versus gas and ice giants: A new theory explaining why the inner solar system is so different to the outer regions runs counter to the prevailing wisdom. The theory was proposed by an international research group with ETH Zurich participation. Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars in the inner solar system are relatively small, […]

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One-year launch anniversary of CHEOPS

One-year launch anniversary of CHEOPS

In its first year in orbit, the CHEOPS space telescope has already revealed details of one of the most extreme exoplanets and showed its maneuverability by evading space debris. CHEOPS is a joint mission by the European Space Agency (ESA) and Switzerland, under the aegis of the University of Bern in collaboration with the University […]

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