jan 222013
Evidence for Asteroid Belt Around the Star Vega

  Astronomers have discovered what appears to be a large asteroid belt around the star Vega, the second brightest star in northern night skies. The scientists used data from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope and the European Space Agency’s Herschel Space Observatory, in which NASA plays an important role. This artist’s concept illustrates an asteroid belt [continue reading]

okt 262012
The Revival of  a 'Dead' Exoplanet: Zombie Fomalhaut B

  A second look at data from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope is reanimating the claim that the nearby star Fomalhaut hosts a massive exoplanet. The study suggests that the planet, named Fomalhaut b, is a rare and possibly unique object that is completely shrouded by dust. Fomalhaut, the brightest star in the constellation Piscis Austrinus. Image [continue reading]

apr 112012
Herschel spots comet massacre around nearby star

ESA’s Herschel Space Observatory has studied the dusty belt around the nearby star Fomalhaut. The dust appears to be coming from collisions that destroy up to thousands of icy comets every day. Herschel Fomalhaut Fomalhaut is a young star, just a few hundred million years old, and twice as massive as the Sun. Its dust [continue reading]

apr 082012
Dust disk around Fomalhaut hints at pair of orbiting bodies

Two small planets might be sculpting an enormous dust ring around the star Fomalhaut, a mere 25 light-years away from Earth. But it’s not too likely that either planet is the notorious Fomalhaut b, which once held the title of the first directly imaged exo-world. Fomalhaut  Credit: NASA   “The best explanation so far is that [continue reading]