ESOcast 212 Light: First Giant Planet around White Dwarf Found

First Giant Planet around White Dwarf Found ESO’s Very Large Telescope has found evidence of a giant planet around a white dwarf star. Astronomers had surveyed around 7000 white dwarfs and found one unlike any other, with chemical elements in amounts never before seen at a white dwarf. Detailed observations with the X-shooter instrument on the VLT confirmed the presence of hydrogen, oxygen and sulphur… …and found that these elements were in a disc of gas swirling into the white dwarf. These clues point to the existence of a Neptune-like exoplanet orbiting the white dwarf. The radiation from the hot white dwarf evaporates the planet’s atmosphere, forming the disc of gas. This unique system hints at what our own Solar System might look like in the distant future. bite-sized astronomy Reaching new heights in Astronomy.
Produced by ESO, the European Southern Observatory. Transcription by ESO; translation by —


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