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The first ever seen planet formation around a young star.





   An artist’s impression of the HD 100546 system. A planet that is still in the process of forming           could be boosting a transfer of material from the gas-rich outer part of the disk to the inner regions.
                               Credit: David Cabezas Jimeno (SEA
Astronomers have successfully peered through the amniotic sac of a star that is still forming to observe the innermost region of a burgeoning solar system for the first time.
In a researcher paper published today in the journal Monthly notice of the Royal Astronomical society, the international team of researchers described their findings in their observations of the parent star, which is called HD 100546.
“Nobody have ever seen this close to a star that is still forming and which also has at least one planet so close in,” said Lead author Dr. Ignacio Mendigutia, from the school of physics and Astronomy at the University of Leeds.
“We have been able to detect for the first time emission from the innermost part of the disk of the gas that surrounds the central star. Unexpectedly, this emission is similar to that of barren young stars that do not show any signs of planet formation.
The astronomers used the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) to observe the distant system. The Observatory is based in Chile. The VLTI combines the four wide 8.2m-wide telescope and can make images as sharp as that of a single telescope that is 130m in diameter. Yeah, telescopes are very wide.
The distance that separate we from the star system is very large, 325 light-years, “it was like trying to observe something the size of a pinhead from 100km away,” said Professor Rene Oudmaijer, a co-author of the study.
HD 100546 is a young star, compared to the age of the Sun, it is only a thousandth the age of the Sun, and it is surrounded by a disk shaped structure of gas and dust, called proto-planetary disk. In which planets can form. Such disks are common around young stars, but the one around HD 100546 is very peculiar: if the star were placed at the center of our Solar System, the outer part of the disk would extend ten times the orbit of Pluto.
“More interestingly, the disk exhibits a gap that is devoid of material. This gap is very large, about 10 times the size of space that separates sun from earth. The inner disk of gas could only survive for a few years before being trapped by the central star, so it must be continuously replenished somehow,” said Dr Mendigutia.
“We suggest that the gravitational influence of the still-forming planet----or planets—in the gap could be boosting a transfer of materials from the gas rich outer part of the disk to the inner regions.
“With the observation of the inner disk of gas in the HD 100546 system, we’re beginning to understand the earliest life of planet hosting stars on a scale that is comparable to our solar system,” concludes Professor Oudmaijer.
This is a progress to humanity knowledge of the universe, how I wish our technology could allow us to reach these vast areas of the cosmos.
Ed Tesla

Ed Tesla

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