This animation takes us on a flythrough of the Gliese 876 system. The star, the orbits and the sizes of all three known planets are to scale.
We first see the outermost planet, Gliese 876b, which was discovered in 1998. It orbits the star once every 61 Earth days, and has about twice the mass of Jupiter, our own solar system's largest planet. That makes it roughly 600 times the mass of the Earth. Next we see the middle planet, Gliese 876c, which was discovered in 2001. It orbits the star once every 30 days and has about half the mass of Jupiter, or roughly 150 times the mass of the Earth.
Finally we come to the newly discovered planet. It has about twice the radius of the Earth and about seven-and-a-half times its mass, and it orbits the star once every two days.
Credit: Trent Schindler, National Science Foundation
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