National Centre of Competence in Research PlanetS
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External Newsletter

Editorial

Editorial

Dear Reader In this issue of the Observer, we wished to be closer and more personal than usual. In particular, we would like to introduce the people responsible for the day-to-day operations of our CHEOPS satellite. Their daily work, essentially from home during this pandemic time,  provides the rest of us with a stream of […]

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What PlanetS scientists think about science fiction

What PlanetS scientists think about science fiction

Scientists who like science fiction. A no-go? Or perhaps the opposite? We talked to five scientists from the NCCR PlanetS about their relationship with science fiction and how they assess the influence of science on science fiction and vice versa.   Dr. Vincent Bourrier Assistant Professor, Observatoire de Genève, Département d’Astronomie, Université de Genève What […]

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What’s out there? – UniPress in space

What’s out there? – UniPress in space

More than 4000 planets have already been discovered since Michel Major and Didier Queloz tracked down the first exoplanet orbiting a sun-like star in 1995 – triggering a revolution in astronomy. With the National Center of Competence in Research NCCR PlanetS, Switzerland is at the forefront of this adventure, as the current issue of the […]

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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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Editorial

Editorial

Dear Reader, One year in space, more than 5300 Earth orbits completed corresponding to more than 236 million kilometers travelled, and over 439’000 superb images downlinked. All things considered, CHEOPS had a  very good year in space  compared to what happened to us on the ground. Of course, we had our moments of stress before […]

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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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