|The opening scene shows the two stars of the binary system
orbiting their common center of mass, and the planet entering the field of view
far behind. For display purposes, the sizes of the stars and the planet
are exagerated by a factor of about 100.
The colors and starspots of the stars reflect the idea that they are K and M dwarfs, stars that are of lower mass and temperature (and hence redder) than the Sun. The markings on the planet are loosely modeled upon the markings of the planet Jupiter, whose mass is similar to that deduced for this planet. We zoom in on the planet as it continues in its orbit, and then zoom back out to see the whole system. In reality, each binary orbit takes a few years, and each planetary orbit takes decades.
|We then zoom out some more, and circle to the side by 90 degrees, to see a schematic view of a "source" star, the "lens" (the triple system), and Earth, and see how light rays from the source are split and focused as the lens crosses the line of sight. The angles and sizes are wildly exagerated in this scene, and the rays jumping around are meant to be purely illustrative. If everything were shown to scale, all the bodies would appear as points and would seem to lie on a straight line.|
|Next, we zoom back in to the previous perspective on the system as it appears on the sky, and see the "microlensing event" as it would appear when viewed through a telescope having microarcsecond resolution, that is, a view that is a million times sharper than possible with current technology. As the source star transits behind the lens system, its image is distorted by the gravitational field of the lens. As a result, the star's light is split and magnified into a series of images that dance and jump on the sky, brightening, fading, appearing, and disappearing in a complicated way. In reality, this scene takes about 2 months to play out.|
|Finally, we zoom out, blur the picture, and replay the previous scene, now seeing only the total, integrated, light variations obtained by summing up all the light in the previous scene. This "light curve" represents the data actually observed by the MPS-Wise teams. When analyzed carefully, the lightcurve leads to the model illustrated in the previous scenes.|
Credits for Animations:
|Created by||Orit Bergman and Guy Friedman|
|Zapa Digital Arts, Tel-Aviv, Israel|
|Directed by||Dr. Dan Maoz,|
|Wise Observatory , Tel-Aviv University, Israel|
|Based on||calculations by Dr. David Bennett and Dr. Sun Hong Rhie|
|Department of Physics,University of Notre Dame|