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Watch This 12-Year Timelapse of Exoplanets Orbiting Their Star

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In 2008, astronomers made a big announcement. They were the first to photograph a multiplanetary solar system. Orbiting another star, just like us. At the time, he was known to have three planets in a system named HR8799, but a follow-up investigation a year later revealed a fourth world.

Astronomers continue to observe this intriguing star system, and now, using observations from the past 12 years, astrophysicist Jason Wang has created a time-lapse video showing the orbital motions of four planets. Summary.

“Astronomical events are either too fast or too slow to be captured on film,” said Wang. However, this video shows the planet moving on a human timescale. I hope people will be able to enjoy great things. “

The young dusty star HR8799 ch is 140 light-years away and about 1.5 times the size of the Sun. Even more interesting is that HR8799 is visible to the naked eye. It has a magnitude of 5.96 and is located inside the western edge of the Great Square of Pegasus, almost exactly halfway between Sheit and Markab.

Location of HR8799. credit: Wikimedia Commons.

The planet was imaged using high-contrast near-infrared adaptive optics observations with the Keck and Gemini telescopes.so Press release from Northwestern University, Wang was immediately fascinated by the system when the news broke in 2008 and has been watching it ever since. He and his colleagues applied for time each year to observe the system at his WM Keck Observatory atop Mauna Kea in Hawaii.

Wang used 12 years of image data to create the time lapse video. This is his 4.5 second timelapse of the whole period condensed.

“Observing an orbital system in a time-lapse video doesn’t give us anything scientifically, but it helps others evaluate what we’re working on,” said Wang. increase. “It can be difficult to describe the nuances of science in words. But showing the science in action helps others understand its importance.”

2008 image of three exoplanets orbiting HR8779 using near-infrared adaptive optics at Keck Observatory. The planets are labeled, and her two outer planets are marked with arrows indicating the magnitude of their movement over a four-year period. Credit: Keck Observatory.

Exoplanets orbit inside a dusty disk, much like our own Kuiper Belt. According to astronomers, this is he one of the most massive disks known around a star within 300 light-years of her from Earth. There was an additional debris disk just inside the orbit of the innermost planet, and this was his fourth discovered planet. Astronomers say it will be the space of the internal system for a terrestrial planet. The most distant planets, on the other hand, take nearly 500 years to orbit their stars.

Wang and his collaborators haven’t finished observing the system. We are now looking at the light emitted by stars and their planets to better understand what they are made of.

“In astrophysics, most of the time we are analyzing data and testing hypotheses,” he said. “But this is the fun part of science. It’s awe-inspiring.”

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