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IMAGE NUMBER: P6979 LICENSE: RIGHTS MANAGED

51 Pegasi B. Artwork of the planet 51 Pegasi B near its sun, the star 51 Pegasi (upper right). Concentric rings of aurorae can be seen around the planet's pole, with flashes of lightning scattered across its surface. The asteroid-like moon (lower right) in orbit around 51 Pegasi B has been heated to red-hot temperatures by the nearby sun. 51 Pegasi is a Sun-like star some 42 light years from Earth. 51 Pegasi B is about half as massive as Jupiter, and orbits only 7 million kilometers from the star, equivalent to 1/6th of Mercury's orbit around the Sun. Aurorae and lightning are found on the gas giants in the solar system, and would be expected on 51 Pegasi B.

Credit: John R. Foster / Science Source

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