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11 More Planets Found Orbiting Other Stars

April 05, 2001

An international team based at the Geneva Observatory said Wednesday they have discovered 11 new planets orbiting stars other than the sun, bringing the grand total of such extrasolar planets to 67. As with previous discoveries, the planets were identified by monitoring the wobble of stars caused by the planets' gravitational attraction.

Among the oddities in the new group of planets: a two-planet system around star HD 82943 in which one orbital period is exactly twice as long as the other; another two-planet system, around HD 74156, with a planet the size of Jupiter and an even more massive planet farther out; and a planet with the most elongated orbit yet discovered, ranging from 3 million to 79 million miles from its star.

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Compiled by Times medical writer Thomas H. Maugh II

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