Light from a distant solar system, c 2005.
© National Aeronautics & Space Administration / Science & Society
Light emitted by a planet far beyond our Solar System has been identified for the first time. The planet illustrated in this drawing had its light detected by comparing the brightness of only the parent star, when the planet was behind the star, to the light emitted when both the planet and its parent star were visible. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope made the observation in infrared light, where the intrinsic glow of the planet outshines the light it reflects from its central star.