According to NASA, Saturn has a seriously thicc relative about 700 light-years away, in the constellation Virgo. Somehow, the fact this is Saturn’s lookalike isn’t even close to the coolest thing about this exoplanet.

Using the space agency’s Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes, scientists analyzed the atmosphere of this strange world, called WASP-39b. Though it’s similar to Saturn in terms of mass, researchers have recently discovered evidence that WASP-39b contains roughly three times as much water as its famous cousin. The researchers’ findings have been published in The Astronomical Journal.

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Artist's rendition of WASP-39b

By observing the starlight that penetrates through the planet’s atmosphere, researchers found WASP-39b’s atmosphere traps a lot of water vapor. They posit the planet was formed farther away from its star and wallopped by icy objects along the way.

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“This spectrum is thus far the most beautiful example we have of what a clear exoplanet atmosphere looks like,” the study’s lead investigator Hannah Wakeford, an astronomer the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, says in a statement.

WASP-39b's spectrum.

WASP-39b is considered a “hot Saturn” by astronomers. Though it’s similar in mass to the gas giant in our solar system, it’s located 20 times closer to its host star — WASP-39 — than Earth is to our sun. It’s also tidally locked, meaning one side of the planet is always facing its sun. That side of the planet can get as hot as 1,430 degrees Fahrenheit (776.7 degrees Celsius).

Even though it’s super far away, this watery world can help scientists better understand the way planets in our solar system may have formed.

“WASP-39b shows exoplanets can have much different compositions than those of our solar system,” the study’s co-author David Sing of the University of Exeter in Devon said in a statement. “Hopefully this diversity we see in exoplanets will give us clues in figuring out all the different ways a planet can form and evolve.”

Next-generation telescopes like James Webb will help demystify exoplanets like WASP-39b and allow scientists to peer into these strange worlds with unprecedented clarity. Of course, that all depends on when James Webb gets off the ground, as NASA already pushed the launch from October 2018 to spring 2019.

NASA, you know what you have to do. Don’t leave us hanging.

Photos via NASA, Artist's Concept: NASA, ESA, G. Bacon and A. Feild (STScI), and H. Wakeford (STScI/Univ. of Exeter)

On Monday, scientists revealed the first images of a human inside the world’s newest total body scanner, called EXPLORER. The name is fitting because this scanner really leaves absolutely nothing to the imagination, tracking the way drugs and disease progress through every nook and cranny in the body.

Designed by biomedical engineering professor Simon Cherry, Ph.D., and biophysicist Ramsey Badawi, Ph.D. at University of California, Davis, this scanner produces images that look like a hybrid between a PET scan (which is often used to find tumors) and an X-ray, all in ghostly black and white. But what’s interesting about EXPLORER, which will be officially unveiled at the Radiological Society of North America meeting on November 24th, isn’t that it produces detailed images of tissues or bones. Cherry tells Inverse that it can also create 3D movies showing where certain drugs may end up in the body.

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon took a step closer to reality on Wednesday, as NASA announced that the company will launch its first test flight for the capsule in just two months’ time. The unmanned test will pave the way for a manned test in the summer of 2019, which will see the first American astronauts enter space on board a commercial spacecraft.

Richard Branson is aiming to get humans into space even earlier than fellow entrepreneur Elon Musk. The founder of Virgin Galactic said Friday that he’s “pretty confident” he’ll be able to launch astronauts into space before December 25. But even if he is able to put the plan into fruition, the end result still won’t be exactly what you’ve come to expect from SpaceX’s previous uncrewed launches.

Elon Musk wants to send humans to Mars, and it could happen as soon as 2024. The SpaceX CEO has outlined a plan to get people to the red planet, with bold visions of refueling rockets to “planet hop” and explore the furthest reaches of the solar system.

Many plans for a Mars settlement expect a community in matters of decades. The United Arab Emirates aims for a city of 600,000 by 2117. Astrobiologist Lewis Dartnell told Inverse last month that “while the first human mission to land on Mars will likely take place in the next two decades, it will probably be more like 50-100 years before substantial numbers of people have moved to Mars to live in self-sustaining towns.”

SpaceX isn’t shy about showing off its rocket recovery capabilities. Most of Falcon 9’s launches culminate with the first stage booster gracefully touching back down on a drone ship. But what isn’t as well-documented is the three-day-long process of getting the rocket from the ocean back to port and onto land. So hobbyist photographer and space enthusiast Stephen Marr decided to film a time-lapse of the process.