A planet is born!

With new telescope technology, we are discovering more and more planets in other star systems. It’s hard to find inner planets because they are so close to their stars that they are blocked by their star’s powerful light. But by using mirrors to block the star’s light, astronomers have discovered the youngest planet ever–in fact, it may more correctly be called a planetesimal. It’s still surrounded by a cloud of dust and gas, from which it’s still being formed!

The theory of how planets form as long been understood, but this is the first time we’ve seen it in action.

If you’re not an astronomer, you probably can’t understand the image they saw, so an artist has helpfully drawn his interpretation of the system.

The telescope photographs:

The artist’s rendition:

Read the article at the Daily Mail.

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6 Responses to A planet is born!

  1. Ben Samuels says:

    How big is this planet now and can we predict how big it will be???

  2. Bryant Blackburn says:

    I was wondering how a mirror would be able to block out a sun’s light?Whwas the one to find it?and is everything that we thought we knew the same?

  3. Chris Schiller Chris Schiller Chris Schiller Chris Schiller Chris Schiller says:

    That is amazing! The layers of dust are so amazing.

  4. Gabe Straus says:

    How fascinating. I wonder how far away Lk-Ca-15-b is from Earth? Also, if you zoom in, I think the artist may have been “inspired” by Jupiter when drawing his planetesimal…

  5. Oliver Cho AKA Ocho says:

    There is a first for everything and this is one of them. We can finally see a planet being born without making animations.

  6. Zain Ali says:

    wow this is awesome, i never thought that astronomers will ever find a actual planet being formed and see it with an actual telescope camera.

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