Seventeen times more massive than Earth, a planet of that magnitude should not exist as a solid celestial body -- or so scientists previously thought. They believed that a massive planet like Kepler-10c would be composed of hydrogen and gas, much like Jupiter and other so-called "gas giants."Well, 10c orbits about twice as close to its star than Mercury does to ours, which could help explain why it isn't a gas giant. Beyond that we can only speculate. Some of us old-school hard sci-fi fans might feel better if it were called Mesklin. Or maybe Starship Troopers would be more accurate: maybe it's an ugly planet, a bug planet!
"Kepler-10c is a big problem for the theory," Sasselov told Discovery News. "It’s nice that we have a solid piece of evidence and measurements for it because that gives motivations to the theorists to improve the theory."
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