Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsDiscoveries

SCIENCE FILE: An exploration of issues and trends affecting
science, medicine and the environment | Science in
Brief

Dust Cloud May Be Planet Being Born Near Dying Sun

September 10, 1998

Astronomers have found a mysterious dust cloud far outside our solar system that may be a planet being born in distant orbit around a dying sun. The finding suggests that planets can form even around very old stars and that there are more planets in the universe than astronomers had realized.

The dust cloud, which is larger than our whole solar system, was identified by astronomers Michael Jura and Jean Turner of UCLA. They report in today's Nature that the mystery cloud, with an estimated overall mass equal to that of Jupiter, floats near a star known as HD44179, about 1,100 light-years from Earth.

Compiled by Times medical writer Thomas H. Maugh II

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|