Episode 143: Planet Hunting Goes Extragalactic, with Xinyu Dai

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Feature Guest: Xinyu Dai

Last month astronomers announced the first ever discovery of extrasolar planets… in another galaxy. We’ve already confirmed almost 4000 planets beyond our solar system, but these have all been in a single galaxy, the Milky Way. But then last month a serendipitous discovery opened the door to a galaxy 3.8 billion light years away and it turns out it’s home to thousands upon thousands of planets.Today we’re joined here at The Star Spot by co-discoverer Xinyu Dai to describe the unplanned discovery and whether this is the beginning of a new era in extrasolar extragalactic planetary astronomy.


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Star Spot podcast is now The Star Spot podcast and radio show. That’s right. Your favourite astronomy program is now travelling through space, specifically the 1280AM frequency. Our broadcaster, CJRU The Scope at Ryerson, is now available on the radio dial, which means you can join us at The Star Spot at 1280AM every Sunday 8PM and Tuesday 6PM Eastern Time.

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Current in Space

The Andromeda Galaxy has tried hard to hide its past, but Dave exposes its dirty secrets. Then Maya numbers our minds with the discovery of the most distant supernova yet. And when psychologists studied the likely ramifications of first contact Tony found the results surprising.

About Our Guest

Xinyu Dai is assistant professor at the University of Oklahoma Department of Physics and Astronomy. He performed undergraduate studies at Beijing University before receiving his PhD from Penn State. He is an expert in gravitational lensing, galaxy clusters, active galactic nuclei and gamma-ray bursts.


Probing Planets in Extragalactic Galaxies Using Quasar Microlensing (scholarly article)

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