Astronomers just discovered a scorched planetary system, Will ours suffer the same fate?
Out in space some 410 light years from us, there has been an extraordinary discovery — Astronomers have found a planet orbiting its dead star. The planet seems to have survived the large violent explosive of the once alive star it orbited with pride.
Just like humans, star too are born and they too die and also not all become a black hole, it’s just that their life span is much longer than ours. When a star run out of fuel — mostly hydrogen, they tend to expand, swelling 90-100 times their size and turning red. Most nearby planets — if any — are mostly life to be swallowed. In our case, our Sun can easily consume Mercury, Venus and also Earth. Next, the more than half dead star will now collapse, shrivelling down to a relatively small size white dwarf — our sun would attain somewhat the size of Earth.
A White Dwarf
According to the study, the planet that survived the death of its star is nothing more than a dead world in itself. The planet is completely stripped and has layers of debris around it. Astronomers think that it must have been a dense rocky planet or a ball of some solid material like iron, as it survived the wrath of a dying star, now nothing more than a white dwarf.
Scientists call this new discovered white dwarf “SDSS J122859.93+104032.9” — “1288” in short. Not sure what they call the planet. But here’s a fact, This planet is till date the second body found to be orbiting a dead star.
This great discovery was done by astronomers from the University of Warwick, UK, after noticing some weirdness in the light signature. The world’s largest optical telescope — the Gran Telescopio Canarias — in Spain served as the instrument for discovery.
Discoveries like these are existing, but more than that, they are important. In some 5 billion years in the future, our Sun our pride will suffer somewhat the same fate — will Earth survive?
The question needs to be answered — it’s the very existence of mankind at stake.