"Because in Cyberspace, no one can hear you scream."
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
A young and relatively nearby star has an environment that looks a lot like home, with collisions between planet-sized objects that resemble the early days of our solar system, astronomers said last week.
The star, catalogued as BD +20 307, sits just 300 light-years away. It is slightly larger than our Sun.
Although no planets have been discovered this star system is extremely dusty, suggesting not only an asteroid belt but perhaps planets similar in size to Earth. Although scientists have mostly theories to go off of on why this star system is dusty (i.e. planetary collisions, etc.) until more powerful telescopes are developed this system will continue remain a mystery to both scientists and astronomers alike.
"The dust we detected is exactly what we would expect from collisions of rocky asteroids or even planet-sized objects, and to find this dust so close to a star like our Sun bumps the significance way up," said astronomer Inseok Song at the Gemini Observatory.
Although there is not much data about this solar system, the very aspect of this star system existing gives scientists new hope of discovering a habital world orbiting a hospitable star. Over 150 stars have been documented hosting planets of their own, but until mankind can develop faster than light travel most of these worlds will simply be "out of reach."
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