In this image, the nightmare world of HD 189733 b, this far-off exoplanet that looks bright blue, is the killer you never see coming.
Any space traveler confusing it with the friendly skies of Earth would be badly mistaken. The weather on this world is deadly. Its winds blow up to 5,400 mph (2 km/s) at seven times the speed of sound, whipping all would-be travelers in a sickening spiral around the planet. And getting caught in the rain on this planet is more than an inconvenience; it’s death by a thousand cuts.
This scorching alien world possibly rains glass—sideways—in its howling winds. The cobalt blue color comes not from the reflection of a tropical ocean, as on Earth, but rather a hazy, blow-torched atmosphere containing high clouds laced with silicate particles.
Take a tour with NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration site of some of the most terrifying and mind-blowing destinations in our galaxy.
Image Credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser