Thanks to observations made with the Very Large Telescope (VLT) of the European Southern Observatory (ESO), they caught revealing signs of the birth of a planet.
The VLT is a telescope system of the European Southern Observatory, located on a mountain near Antofagasta, Chile, and allowed capturing impressive images of the birth of a star system.
The find was located around the young star AB Aurigae which has a dense disk of dust and gas in which astronomers detected a prominent spiral structure with a twist that marks the site where a planet may be forming.
Astronomers consider that the observed feature could be the first direct evidence of a newborn planet.
The importance of the find is that it would allow us to know how planets formAlthough thousands of exoplanets have been identified, little is known of their origin.
What is known is that planets are born within the dusty disks that surround young stars, like AB Aurigae, as dust and cold gas gather a planet is formed.
The observations that were published in the magazine Astronomy & Astrophysics, They will help scientists better understand the planets’ birth process.
The importance of the finding is that it would allow knowing about how planets formPhoto: ESO / Boccaletti et al
The image of the birth of the new planet
Astronomers indicate that the image shows a spiral structure with a “fold” near the center, which suggests that it’s about forming a new world.
According to NASA, the particles surrounding these young stars are only 1/50 the diameter of a human hair, but gravitational forces bind gas and dust and, sometime between 1 and 10 million years later, all that collision results in a planetary body.
Although scientists have seen “baby” planets on other occasions, it is believed that This is the first time they have managed to capture one in the process of formation.
We need to look at very young systems to capture the moment planets form, the European agency said in a statement. But, until now, astronomers have been unable to obtain sharp and deep enough images of these young discs to find the exact point that marks the place where a planet may be being born.
- AB Aurigae is 520 light years from Earth, in the constellation Auriga.
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