An international team of researchers has announced the discovery of an exoplanet that is doomed to die. In just a few million years, it will fall on its star.
Exoplanet Kepler-1658b was discovered back in 2009. Curiously enough, it was the first extrasolar world whose transit was recorded by the newly launched Kepler Space Telescope. But despite this, it took astronomers another ten years to finally confirm the existence of this body.
Kepler-1658b is a typical hot Jupiter. It orbits a pro-evolved star of spectral class F, located 2,600 light-years from Earth. The exoplanet has six times the mass of Jupiter, and its orbit is only 0.05 AU (7 million km) from its parent luminary. Because of this, its atmosphere is heated to high temperatures.
During the analysis of data on the transits Kepler-1658b, collected by the Kepler Space Telescope, TESS, as well as ground-based observatories, astronomers discovered something interesting. The exoplanet's orbital period is decreasing at a rate of about 131 ms per year. This may seem like a small value, but only until you remember how close the orbit of Kepler-1658b passes from its star.
According to scientists, this deceleration is caused by the effect of tidal forces from the star. It was largely influenced by the fact that the luminary reached the end of its life cycle and began to expand. Calculations made by the researchers show that in just 2.5 million years (which is very little by astronomical standards), Kepler-1658b will fall on its star.