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See microlensing in action

Here’s how astronomers detect free-floating planets.
Free-floating-planet
NASA/JPL-Caltech
In the June issue of Astronomy, author Steve Nadis wrote “Do billions of rogue planets drift through space?” His story talks a great deal about a technique astronomers use called gravitational microlensing.

This NASA artist’s animation illustrates the technique used for finding free-floating Jupiter-mass planets in space. Astronomers think gravitational interactions ejected such worlds early on from their developing solar systems.

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