Exoplanet Explorer takes you on a journey into deep space, beyond the limits of our Solar System. Based on the latest available data, you’ll explore 3D recreations of more than 500 known planets and systems that orbit our neighbours in the Milky Way galaxy.
The Planets have been divided up into 6 classes using the Mass Classification system from PHL, and further subdivided into 3 temperature classes. The result is a table of 18 possible planet types, each of which has been rendered in 3D to approximate planetary appearance. These planetary models are then assembled into systems to give you an idea of what each system could look like, if it were possible to visit it today.
In addition to navigating with the touch of a finger, Exoplanet Explorer offers filtering functionality which will let you narrow down the list to the planets and systems to just the ones you are interested in.
Statistics are also provided to summarise the information in the database.
The data is sourced from The Exoplanets Encyclopedia and wherever possible missing values are either estimated or looked up from other sites such as Wikipedia or Simbad. In general, most planets and systems are quite well defined, but in a few cases there is insufficient data to even make an attempt to estimate their likely appearance. These planets and stars won’t be shown by Exoplanet Explorer.
Planet are divided into the following mass classes:
- Mercurian – rocky worlds that have the approximate mass of Mercury
- Sub-terran – rocky planets with a mass similar to Mars
- Terran – rocky worlds with similar mass to Earth
- Super-terran – rocky worlds with a higher mass than Earth
- Neptunian – gas giants similar to Neptune
- Jovian – gas giants as massive or more massive than Jupiter
The planets are further divided into the following temperature classes:
- Hot – planets that are too hot to support liquid water
- Warm – planets in the star’s habitable zone where liquid water could exist
- Cold – planets beyond the habitable zone where water would only exist as ice
Coding and graphics by Neil Burlock