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A strange lonely planet found without a star [Nibiru?]
Phys.Org ^ | 09 OCT 2013 | Provided by University of Hawaii at Manoa

Posted on 10/10/2013 2:17:55 PM PDT by Red Badger

An international team of astronomers has discovered an exotic young planet that is not orbiting a star. This free-floating planet, dubbed PSO J318.5-22, is just 80 light-years away from Earth and has a mass only six times that of Jupiter. The planet formed a mere 12 million years ago—a newborn in planet lifetimes.

It was identified from its faint and unique heat signature by the Pan-STARRS 1 (PS1) wide-field survey telescope on Haleakala, Maui. Follow-up observations using other telescopes in Hawaii show that it has properties similar to those of gas-giant planets found orbiting around young stars. And yet PSO J318.5-22 is all by itself, without a host star.

"We have never before seen an object free-floating in space that that looks like this. It has all the characteristics of young planets found around other stars, but it is drifting out there all alone," explained team leader Dr. Michael Liu of the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. "I had often wondered if such solitary objects exist, and now we know they do."

During the past decade, extrasolar planets have been discovered at an incredible pace, with about a thousand found by indirect methods such as wobbling or dimming of their host stars induced by the planet. However, only a handful of planets have been directly imaged, all of which are around young stars (less than 200 million years old). PSO J318.5-22 is one of the lowest-mass free-floating objects known, perhaps the very lowest. But its most unique aspect is its similar mass, color, and energy output to directly imaged planets.

"Planets found by direct imaging are incredibly hard to study, since they are right next to their much brighter host stars. PSO J318.5-22 is not orbiting a star so it will be much easier for us to study. It is going to provide a wonderful view into the inner workings of gas-giant planets like Jupiter shortly after their birth," said Dr. Niall Deacon of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany and a co-author of the study.

PSO J318.5-22 was discovered during a search for the failed stars known as brown dwarfs. Due to their relatively cool temperatures, brown dwarfs are very faint and have very red colors. To circumvent these difficulties, Liu and his colleagues have been mining the data from the PS1 telescope. PS1 is scanning the sky every night with a camera sensitive enough to detect the faint heat signatures of brown dwarfs. PSO J318.5-22 stood out as an oddball, redder than even the reddest known brown dwarfs.

"We often describe looking for rare celestial objects as akin to searching for a needle in a haystack. So we decided to search the biggest haystack that exists in astronomy, the dataset from PS1," said Dr. Eugene Magnier of the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and a co-author of the study. Dr. Magnier leads the data processing team for PS1, which produces the equivalent of 60,000 iPhone photos every night. The total dataset to date is about 4,000 Terabytes, bigger than the sum of the digital version of all the movies ever made, all books ever published, and all the music albums ever released.

The team followed up the PS1 discovery with multiple telescopes on the summit of Mauna Kea on the island of Hawaii. Infrared spectra taken with the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility and the Gemini North Telescope showed that PSO J318.5-22 was not a brown dwarf, based on signatures in its infrared light that are best explained by it being young and low-mass.

By regularly monitoring the position of PSO J318.5-22 over two years with the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, the team directly measured its distance from Earth. Based on this distance, about 80 light-years, and its motion through space, the team concluded that PSO J318.5-22 belongs to a collection of young stars called the Beta Pictoris moving group that formed about 12 million years ago. In fact, the eponymous star of the group, Beta Pictoris, has a young gas-giant planet in orbit around it. PSO J318.5-22 is even lower in mass than the Beta Pictoris planet and probably formed in a different fashion.


TOPICS: Astronomy; Science; UFO's; Weird Stuff
KEYWORDS: nibiru; psoj318522; xplanets

Artist's conception of PSO J318.5-22. Credit: MPIA/V. Ch. Quetz

Multicolor image from the Pan-STARRS1 telescope of the free-floating planet PSO J318.5-22, in the constellation of Capricornus. The planet is extremely cold and faint, about 100 billion times fainter in optical light than the planet Venus. Most of its energy is emitted at infrared wavelengths. The image is 125 arcseconds on a side. Credit: N. Metcalfe & Pan-STARRS 1 Science Consortium

1 posted on 10/10/2013 2:17:56 PM PDT by Red Badger
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To: SunkenCiv; KevinDavis

Space and Astronomy Ping!.................


2 posted on 10/10/2013 2:18:25 PM PDT by Red Badger (TANSTAAFL always wins. Always...........................)
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To: Red Badger
"I had often wondered if such solitary objects exist, and now we know they do."

Well now that you know, what are you going to do about it?

3 posted on 10/10/2013 2:22:36 PM PDT by Talisker (One who commands, must obey.)
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To: Red Badger

Just don’t call it Melancholia.


4 posted on 10/10/2013 2:23:54 PM PDT by dainbramaged (Joe McCarthy was right.)
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To: Talisker

I’m a lonely little planet in a Asteroid patch..............


5 posted on 10/10/2013 2:24:04 PM PDT by Red Badger (TANSTAAFL always wins. Always...........................)
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To: Red Badger

I’m guessing there are a lot of them out there.


6 posted on 10/10/2013 2:27:28 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: Red Badger

How much bigger would it need to be to ignite? Then it would just be another young star.


7 posted on 10/10/2013 2:29:26 PM PDT by dangerdoc (see post #6)
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To: cripplecreek
Let's hope they stay 'out there'.....
8 posted on 10/10/2013 2:29:58 PM PDT by Red Badger (TANSTAAFL always wins. Always...........................)
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To: Red Badger

Yet another cosmic body that will stretch the definition of planet as decreed by the IAU. Why not give this group of objects another name, using Latin this time out. Say, Vagus, or my favorite, Peregrinus?


9 posted on 10/10/2013 2:33:03 PM PDT by centurion316
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To: dangerdoc

I'd assume much bigger. NEED MORE MASS! MUST CONSUME HUGE QUANTITIES!.....

10 posted on 10/10/2013 2:33:24 PM PDT by Red Badger (TANSTAAFL always wins. Always...........................)
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To: Red Badger
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
11 posted on 10/10/2013 2:34:45 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: Red Badger

“has a mass only six times that of Jupiter.”

ONLY?


12 posted on 10/10/2013 2:35:47 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Red Badger

Fromm what I remember from college wouldn’t the size of the planet be very close to the critical mass needed for the formation of a star?


13 posted on 10/10/2013 2:44:31 PM PDT by Cyman
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To: dangerdoc

“For stars with similar metallicity to the Sun, the theoretical minimum mass the star can have, and still undergo fusion at the core, is estimated to be about 75 times the mass of Jupiter.”

This one is six times the mass of Jupiter, so maybe 12.5 times larger to ignite, rough estimate.

I don’t even know if it is possible for planets to become stars, even gas giants with the right composition. Stars are thought to form from interstellar gas clouds that become dense enough to start collapsing gravitationally. A planet has already coalesced to a gravitational equilibrium, so I think it’s too late at that point.


14 posted on 10/10/2013 2:45:26 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Red Badger
Sounds like a young, large protoplanet that got flung, for some reason, from one of the young stars in the vicinity.

Maybe gravity hasn't had enough time to increase its' density or rotational speed is too great?

15 posted on 10/10/2013 2:45:53 PM PDT by The Cajun (Sarah Palin, Mark Levin, Ted Cruz......Nuff said.)
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To: Cyman

Check my reply #14


16 posted on 10/10/2013 2:46:32 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Boogieman

I think it is classified as a planet simply because it does not fuse hydrogen, not based on structure or origin.


17 posted on 10/10/2013 2:49:53 PM PDT by dangerdoc (see post #6)
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To: dangerdoc

Maybe. I suppose there could be a bigger gas cloud surrounding it, and this is just the part that has already collapsed into a stable structure.


18 posted on 10/10/2013 2:57:06 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: Red Badger
Six times Jupiter's mass is more like a failed star than a planet (which I think by definition should be orbiting something). One more thing for Red Dwarf and the boys to accidentally run into.


19 posted on 10/10/2013 3:05:03 PM PDT by katana (Just my opinions)
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To: Red Badger
...has a mass only six times that of Jupiter.

A failed star, insufficient mass to start the reaction, or coalescing and reaction to start soon- maybe a few million more years.

20 posted on 10/10/2013 3:18:29 PM PDT by JimRed (Excise the cancer before it kills us; feed & water the Tree of Liberty! TERM LIMITS NOW & FOREVER!)
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To: katana

It’s just the Borg home base. Nothing to see here - move on.


21 posted on 10/10/2013 3:21:50 PM PDT by conservaterian (Time for a CONSERVATIVE party, but noooo, if we do that the libs will win !)
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To: JimRed
This one is six times the mass of Jupiter, so maybe 12.5 times larger to ignite, rough estimate.

...reaction to start soon- maybe a few million more years or maybe never, if that is correct.

22 posted on 10/10/2013 3:23:56 PM PDT by JimRed (Excise the cancer before it kills us; feed & water the Tree of Liberty! TERM LIMITS NOW & FOREVER!)
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To: dainbramaged

Magratheia!

Maybe Zaphod and Ford are there!


23 posted on 10/10/2013 3:37:44 PM PDT by Fai Mao (Genius at Large)
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To: dangerdoc

It would take roughly 65 Jupiter masses (or 0.1 solar masses, some say 0.08 solar masses) for p-p chain initiation. Brown dwarves as low as 15 Jupiter masses can burn deuterium and lithium, but will quickly exhaust that fuel since it is only a small percentage of the mass of the brown dwarf (still mostly hydrogen). Six Jupiter masses would not be sufficient to ignite, so much of the heat is due to continuing gravitational contraction, coupled with the thermal mass. The same applies to Jupiter and most other gas giants.


24 posted on 10/10/2013 3:50:17 PM PDT by Fred Hayek (The Democratic Party is now the operational arm of the CPUSA)
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To: ClearBlueSky

PING!!!!!

Of interest.


25 posted on 10/10/2013 8:30:03 PM PDT by Shadowstrike (Be polite, Be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.)
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A Strange Lonely Planet Found Without A Star
Science Daily | 09 October 2013
Posted on 10/10/2013 12:49:33 AM PDT by zeestephen
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/3077076/posts


26 posted on 10/10/2013 9:02:38 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (It's no coincidence that some "conservatives" echo the hard left.)
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To: Red Badger; KevinDavis; annie laurie; Knitting A Conundrum; Viking2002; Ernest_at_the_Beach; ...

Thanks Red Badger.
 
X-Planets
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Google news searches: exoplanet · exosolar · extrasolar ·

27 posted on 10/10/2013 9:03:11 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (It's no coincidence that some "conservatives" echo the hard left.)
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