A new class of planets, the planets without a star


26/05/2011

Astronomer David Bennett of the University of Notre Dame, is the co-author of the article that describes a new class of planets - dark, isolated objects with a mass of Jupiter (the largest planet in our solar system) that drift in space, all alone, away from their home star. Bennett with a team of astronomers who took part in the opening, said that these planets have departed from the planetary systems in which they are incurred.

The discovery was made on the basis of the analysis of observations of the tab in the center of the Milky Way, which was produced in 2006 and 2007 in a joint effort of Japan and New Zealand. Analysis allowed us to detect 10 rushing freely in space, planets with a mass of about Jupiter. Bennett described the probable origin of these isolated planets, "Our data suggest that planetary systems are often out of balance, causing the planet to leave their familiar places, colliding with other planets."

Their discovery not only suggests that planets without stars exist, but also that they are fairly common. They are very hard to detect, and since they were able to find 10 immediately, it means that there are many more who have not yet noticed. The team that has made this discovery, it is estimated that the number of Free Planets with a mass of Jupiter, roughly twice the number of stars. This means that the planet is not less prevalent than normal planets like our Earth, orbiting the star.

"Our study - this is a survey of the population - we explored a small section of the galaxy, and we can extrapolate the data to the entire galaxy" - said Bennett. "This study was not sensitive with respect to the planets whose mass is less than that of planets like Jupiter and Saturn, but theories of planet with less mass, such as the Earth, must often leave their star, so that should meet more frequently than the free world the size of Jupiter. "

Original: Physorg


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