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Astronomers Discover First Binary-Binary Solar System HD 87646, has Primary Star 12 Percent more massive than Sun

The primary star of the new binary system HD 87646 is twelve percent more massive than our Sun

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October 20, 2016: Everything that we have known about the formation of our solar system might be wrong, says University of Florida astronomy professor Jian Ge and his postdoc, Bo Ma. Astronomers have discovered a binary-binary solar system.

This discovered solar system, i.e. two mighty companions revolving around one star in close binary. The  binary system is said to have been named HD 87646, mentioned Science Daily.

The Binary system has one ” giant planet” which is called the MARVELS-7a, and a dwarf planet called the MARVELS-7b. The MARVELS- 7a is 12 times the mass of Jupiter while MARVELS-7b is 57 times the mass of Jupiter.

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According to the Science Daily report, astronomers believed that the planets in our solar system have evolved from a collapsed disk dust cloud, with the larger planet in the system move far away from our primary star.

In the new binary HD 87646, astronomers have noticed that these large companions are in close proximity to the primary star, which means that they have collected way more dust and gas than a particular disk dust cloud can provide. It is probable that they are formed  through some other mechanism.

The primary star of the new binary system HD 87646 is twelve percent more massive than our Sun. The secondary star is ten percent less massive than our Sun, yet the two planets have only 22 astronomical units of distance between them, which is equivalent to the distance between our Sun and Uranus. In spite of the close proximity between the two massive bodies, the stability of the system raises a question on how the protoplanetary disks are formed.

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The planet-hunting Doppler instrument W.M. Keck Exoplanet Tracker, or KeckET, which was developed by a team led by Ge at the Sloan Digital Sky Survey telescope at Apache Point Observatory in New Mexico, is atypical that it can simultaneously observe dozens of celestial bodies.

-Prepared by Enakshi Roy Chowdhury of Newsgram. Twitter: @enakshirc58

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Astronomers building small space telescope to explore nearby stars

The telescope uses a mirror system with coatings optimized for ultraviolet light. Together with the camera, the system can measure very small changes in the brightness of M dwarf stars to carry out the primary science of the mission.

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The name of the stars which astronomers will study are called M-Dwarfs. Pixabay
The name of the stars which astronomers will study are called M-Dwarfs. Pixabay
  • Astronomers are building a space telescope to study the nearby stars.
  • the telescope will be small along with a camera attached to it.
  • Studying these nearby stars will help astronomers help study the way planets orbit around the stars.

Astronomers are in the process of building a small space telescope to explore the flares and sunspots of small nearby stars to assess how habitable the space environment is for planets orbiting them.

The telescope with a diameter of 9 centimetres, or 3.6 inches, will be fitted on a spacecraft known as the Star-Planet Activity Research CubeSat, or SPARCS to be launched in 2021, to focus on stars that are small, dim and cool by comparison to the sun.

Astronomers through this feat will be able study the path of planets.
Astronomers through this feat will be able study the path of planets.

These stars — known as M dwarfs — are less than half the sun’s size and temperature and they shine with barely one per cent of its brightness.

The telescope will be built alongside a camera with two ultraviolet (UV)-sensitive detectors to be optimised for observations using UV light, which strongly affects the planet’s atmosphere and its potential to harbour life on the surface.

“People have been monitoring M dwarfs as best they can in visible light. But the stars’ strongest flares occur mainly in the ultraviolet, which Earth’s atmosphere mostly blocks,” said Evgenya Shkolnik, Assistant Professor at the Arizona State University.

Although the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope can view stars at ultraviolet wavelengths unhindered, its overcrowded observing schedule would let it dedicate only the briefest of efforts to M dwarfs.

Telescope can view stars at ultraviolet wavelengths unhindered. Wikimedia Commons
Telescope can view stars at ultraviolet wavelengths unhindered. Wikimedia Commons

The telescope uses a mirror system with coatings optimized for ultraviolet light. Together with the camera, the system can measure very small changes in the brightness of M dwarf stars to carry out the primary science of the mission.

M dwarfs are exceedingly common that they make up three-quarters of all the stars in our Milky Way galaxy as well as nearly 40 billion rocky planets in habitable zones around these stars, meaning that most of the habitable-zone planets in our galaxy orbit M dwarfs.

Capturing lengthy observations of M dwarfs will let astronomers study how stellar activity affects planets that orbit the star. IANS