Wednesday, February 03, 2016

A Birthday Every Million Years

That's how long you'd have to wait to celebrate your birthday if you lived on the recently discovered largest solar system:

Astronomers have discovered the largest known solar system, consisting of a large planet that takes nearly a million years to orbit its star
The gas giant is one trillion kilometres away, making its orbit 140 times wider than Pluto's path around our Sun. 
The planet, known as 2MASS J2126-8140, is between 12 and 15 times the mass of Jupiter.
"We were very surprised to find such a low-mass object so far from its parent star," said Dr Simon Murphy from the Australian National University (ANU). 
"There is no way it formed in the same way as our solar system did, from a large disc of dust and gas." 
"They must not have lived their lives in a very dense environment. They are so tenuously bound together that any nearby star would have disrupted their orbit completely."
It always amazes me to read about these kinds of discoveries, how they make them and the speculation about what could or couldn't have happened.

More at the BBC article.

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