Button to scroll to the top of the page.

Updates

Campus health and safety are our top priorities. Get the latest from UT on COVID-19.

Get help with Zoom and more.

News

From the College of Natural Sciences
Astronomers Discover Rocky Planet Orbiting Nearest Star, Proxima Centauri

Astronomers Discover Rocky Planet Orbiting Nearest Star, Proxima Centauri

An international team of astronomers including Michael Endl of The University of Texas at Austin have found clear evidence of a planet orbiting Proxima Centauri, the closest star to the Sun. The long-sought new world, called Proxima b, orbits its cool red parent star every 11 days and has a temperature suitable for liquid water to exist on its surface. This rocky world is a little more massive than Earth and is the closest known exoplanet to us — and may be the closest possible abode for life outside our solar system.

Young 'Super-Neptune' Offers Clues to Origin of Close-in Exoplanets

Young 'Super-Neptune' Offers Clues to Origin of Close-in Exoplanets

A team of astronomers led by Andrew Mann of The University of Texas at Austin has confirmed the existence of a young planet, only 11 million years old, that orbits extremely close to its star (at 0.05 AU), with an orbital period of 5.4 days. Approximately five times the size of Earth, the new planet is a "super-Neptune" and the youngest such planet known. The discovery lends unique insights into the origin of planetary system architectures.

Newly discovered planet could shed light on planetary evolution

Newly discovered planet could shed light on planetary evolution

University of Texas at Austin astronomer Andrew Mann and colleagues have discovered a planet in a nearby star cluster which could help astronomers better understand how planets form and evolve. The discovery of planet K2-25b used both the Kepler space telescope and the university's McDonald Observatory, and is published in a recent issue of the Astrophysical Journal.

Texas Astronomers Help Find Earth’s Older, Bigger Cousin

Texas Astronomers Help Find Earth’s Older, Bigger Cousin

University of Texas at Austin astronomers working with NASA’s Kepler mission have helped to discover the first near-Earth-sized planet around a Sun-like star in the “habitable zone,” the range of distances where liquid water could pool on a planet’s surface. They used the university’s McDonald Observatory to help confirm the finding, which has been...
McDonald Observatory’s Andrew Mann Wins Prestigious Hubble Fellowship

McDonald Observatory’s Andrew Mann Wins Prestigious Hubble Fellowship

Astronomer Andrew Mann of The University of Texas at Austin has been awarded a Hubble Fellowship from NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute, science center for the Hubble Space Telescope.

Astronomers Discover Ancient Solar System with Five Earth-sized Planets

Astronomers Discover Ancient Solar System with Five Earth-sized Planets

A team of scientists including The University of Texas at Austin’s Dr. William Cochran has discovered a solar system similar to our own dating back to the dawn of our Milky Way galaxy. They are reporting the find of five planets with sizes between Mercury and Venus orbiting the Sun-like star Kepler-444 in today’s issue of The Astrophysical Journal.

NASA, Texas Astronomers Find First Multi-Planet System around a Binary Star

NASA, Texas Astronomers Find First Multi-Planet System around a Binary Star

The discovery of the Tatooine-like system proves that whole planetary systems can form in a disk around a binary star.

Astronomers Probe ‘Evaporating’ Planet Around Nearby Star with Hobby-Eberly Telescope

Astronomers Probe ‘Evaporating’ Planet Around Nearby Star with Hobby-Eberly Telescope

A Jupiter-size planet in a nearby solar system is dissolving because of interactions with its parent star.

Tags:
Texas Astronomers Collaborate to Find Goldilocks Planet

Texas Astronomers Collaborate to Find Goldilocks Planet

The planet is the first located in the "just-right" orbit that's not too hot, nor too cold for water to exist in liquid form, making life as we know it possible.

Tags:
Astronomers Discover Unusual Multi-Planet Solar System With NASA’s Kepler Spacecraft

Astronomers Discover Unusual Multi-Planet Solar System With NASA’s Kepler Spacecraft

A team of researchers has used NASA's Kepler space telescope to discover an unusual multiple-planet system containing a super-Earth and two Neptune-sized planets orbiting in resonance with each other.