Today's Coming Crisis Movie

Friday, November 4, 2011

Swirling debris around a star could show formation of new planets - 4th Nov 2011

This amazing picture of a heavenly spiral may look like our own Milky Way, with its distinctive swirl.

But in fact it's not a galaxy, but a single star - 400 light years away from Earth, in the constellation Lupus - the wolf.

The young star, known as SAO 206462, is surrounded by a disc of gas 14billion miles across - and its gravitational pull has arranged the disc into two spiral arms.

While these spirals are not unknown to astronomers, they are usually found in galaxies made up of millions of stars, not just around a single star.

The unprecedented phenomenon could suggest that gas and debris are being formed into planets orbiting the star.

The image was captured by the Subaru telescope, and eight-metre instrument perched on the summit of Mauna Kea, a volcano in Hawaii.

This unique viewpoint allows the telescope to get a clear view of the night sky. Read More