Researchers utilizing ESO’s Very Large Telescope have, for the primary time, discovered proof of a large planet related to a white dwarf star. The planet orbits the recent white dwarf, the remnant of a Sun-like star, at close vary, causing its atmosphere to be clear away and type a disc of gas across the star. This unique system hints at what our personal Solar System would possibly seem like within the distant future.
It was one of those chance discoveries,” says researcher Boris Gänsicke, from the University of Warwick within the UK, who led the study, published today in Nature. The group had inspected around 7000 white dwarfs noticed by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and located one to be in contrast to some other. By analyzing subtle variations within the mild from the star, they discovered traces of chemical elements in quantities that scientists had by no means earlier than noticed at a white dwarf.
To get a good idea of the properties of this unusual star, named WDJ0914+1914, the group analyzed it with the X-shooter instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope within the Chilean Atacama Desert. These observe-up observations confirmed the presence of hydrogen, oxygen, and sulfur related to the white dwarf. By finding out the wonderful particulars within the spectra taken by ESO’s X-shooter, the group found that these components had been in a disc of gas swirling into the white dwarf and never coming from the star itself.
In line with the researchers, the exoplanet now discovered with the assistance of ESO’s X-shooter orbits the white dwarf at a distance of only 10 million kilometers, or 15 times the solar radius, which might have been deep contained in the red giant.