Astronomers Discover Sun-Like Star That Ate Some Of Its Planets

Astronomers Discover Sun-Like Star That Ate Some Of Its Planets

Astronomers Discover Sun-Like Star That Ate Some Of Its Planets

The study which was published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics suggests that the star's rare composition is in fact eating some its planets. But unlike our friendly neighborhood star, however, this one is known to have destroyed some of its own planets, in a possible preview of what the future might hold for some planets in our own solar system.

"[This information] doesn't mean that the sun will "eat" the Earth any time soon", Jacob Bean, assistant professor of astronomy and astrophysics at the University of Chicago and co-author of the study in the statement. However, it does hint that planetary systems have a very violent histories and our planetary system is no different.

An worldwide team of scientists has discovered a planetary system with a host star similar to Earth's sun, which could tell the history and connections between stars and their planets.

Astronomers studied the star, known as HIP68468, as part of a project to discover planets that orbit solar twins. Since then, more than two thousand exoplanets have been identified.

Megan Bedell, a UChicago doctoral student said that it is tricky to draw conclusions from a single system. The other, the first super Earth around a solar twin, is three times the Earth's mass and so close to its star that its orbit takes just three days. Debra Fischer, a professor of astronomy at Yale University, argued that astronomers might find it hard to determine the history of an individual star. And considering the many similarities of HIP68468 to our own sun, the situation raises the question of whether such a fate could happen to us. The more recent discovery needs to be confirmed, but includes two planet candidates-a super Neptune and a super Earth.

Analysis of the particular star's composition has revealed that it contains four times more lithium than what can be expected from a star six billion years old. Chances are that these planets were formed away from the star, but migrated inward from the outer parts of the planetary system. Earth would likely stay out of the range of the swell, but it wouldn't count for much since it would be so close that it'd get vaporized in the intensely hot stellar atmosphere in around 7.6 billion years. The study led by Jorge Melendez, a professor at the University Of São Paulo, Brazil revealed that the sun-like star, called "HIP68468", has the capacity of destroying the planets coming into its path.

Bean explained that the Giant Megellan Telescope under construction in Chile, which the University of Chicago is a founding partner, will lend to more discoveries of Earth-like exoplanets around solar twins.

The team continues to monitor more than 60 solar twins, looking for more exoplanets. If a cat is seen sitting next to a canary's cage with yellow feathers in its mouth, it is pretty well certain the cat ate the canary.

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