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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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Water-Rich Planets Commonly Found Outside The Solar System, Study Reveals

The researchers believe that these water worlds likely formed in similar ways to the giant planet cores (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune) which we find in our own solar system

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Solar system
Water-rich planets outside our solar system common: Study. Pixabay

Water is likely to be a major component of those exoplanets which are between two to four times the size of Earth, suggests new research that may have implications for the search of life in our solar system.

Water has been implied previously on individual exoplanets, but this work, presented at the Goldschmidt conference in Boston, Massachusetts, concludes that water-rich planets outside our solar system are common.

The new research, based on data from the exoplanet-hunting Kepler Space Telescope and the Gaia mission, indicates that many of the known planets may contain as much as 50 per cent water, which is much more than the Earth’s 0.02 per cent (by weight) water content.

“It was a huge surprise to realise that there must be so many water-worlds,” said lead researcher Li Zeng of Harvard University.

Scientists have found that many of the 4,000 confirmed or candidate exoplanets discovered so far fall into two size categories — those with the planetary radius averaging around 1.5 times that of the Earth, and those averaging around 2.5 times the radius of the Earth.

Solar system
Solar system. Pixabay

For this study, the scientists developed a model for internal structures of the exoplanets after analysing the exoplanets with mass measurements and recent radius measurements from the Gaia satellite.

“We have looked at how mass relates to radius, and developed a model which might explain the relationship”, said Li Zeng.

“The model indicates that those exoplanets which have a radius of around x1.5 Earth radius tend to be rocky planets (of typically x5 the mass of the Earth), while those with a radius of x2.5 Earth radius (with a mass around x10 that of the Earth) are probably water worlds,” he added.

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“Our data indicate that about 35 per cent of all known exoplanets which are bigger than Earth should be water-rich,” he said, adding that surface of these exoplanets may be shrouded in a water-vapour-dominated atmosphere, with a liquid water layer underneath.

The researchers believe that these water worlds likely formed in similar ways to the giant planet cores (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune) which we find in our own solar system. (IANS)