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An investigation headed by Chilean scientists has discovered the first so-called "Ultra-Hot Neptune," a type of exoplanet considered to be a "rare beast" and located 260 light years from Earth, a distance that is relatively close by in astronomical terms, even though it takes light from it 260 years to reach us.

The planet, which bears the scientific name LTT9779b, is a little larger than the seventh planet from the sun - Neptune, a gas giant - but it has twice the mass, a similar density and orbits so close to its star that its year lasts just 19 hours and the temperature of its atmosphere is greater than 1,700 degrees C (3,000-plus F).