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Astrometric measurements to detect exoplanets

Date: 10 February 2017
Satellite: Gaia
Copyright: ESA

The observed path across the sky, over four years, of a star that is orbited by a planet.

As is the case for all stars, there are two main components to this motion: a linear path across the sky caused by the star's motion through the Galaxy, and a series of oscillations, caused by the motion of the Earth around the Sun. Each oscillation corresponds to one year.

In addition, the presence of a planet orbiting the star perturbs its motion, and this perturbation (shown in brown) is reflected in the star's path across the sky.

Last Update: 10 February 2017

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