Scientists have discovered Jupiter-like exoplanets that smell like rotten eggs

Exoplanet HD 189733 b contains hydrogen sulfide, according to new research.

By detecting the smell of rotten eggs on a Jupiter-like planetary body, scientists made an exciting and poignant announcement about a nearby exoplanet this week.

Analyzing data collected by the James Webb Space Telescope, scientists discovered that the exoplanet, named HD 189733 b, contains hydrogen sulfide, a colorless gas with a strong, egg-like odor released by decaying organic matter.

In addition to hydrogen sulfide, the researchers found carbon dioxide, oxygen, water, and heavy metals in the unique exoplanet’s atmosphere. Nature on Monday.

“Hydrogen sulfide is an important molecule that we don’t know about. We predicted it would be there, we knew it was in Jupiter, but we haven’t really detected it outside the Solar System,” said astrophysicist Guangwei Fu, who led the research at Johns Hopkins, A. Press release.

Exoplanet HD 189733 b was initially discovered in 2005 and, according to the study, is located about 65 light-years from Earth in the Vulpecula galaxy.

Known for its extreme temperatures and “bad weather,” scientists call it “hot Jupiter” because it “has temperatures as hot as 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit and is known for bad weather, including rain glass blown sideways by wind at 5,000 mph” for the study.

“We haven’t looked for life on this planet because it’s too hot, but finding hydrogen sulfide is a step toward finding this molecule on other planets and gaining a better understanding of how different types of planets form,” Fu said.

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Looking to the future, his research team will monitor sulfur in more exoplanets to analyze whether the presence of higher amounts of the chemical compound correlates with their location in space.

“We want to know how these types of planets got there, and understanding their atmospheric composition can help answer that question,” Fu said.

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