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Cosmic 'Death Star' is destroying a planet

The Death Star of the movie Star Wars may be fictional, but planetary destruction is real. Astronomers announced today that they have spotted a large, rocky object disintegrating in its death spiral around a distant white ...

dateOct 21, 2015 in Astronomy
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Jupiter twin discovered around solar twin

Astronomers have used the ESO 3.6-metre telescope to identify a planet just like Jupiter orbiting at the same distance from a Sun-like star, HIP 11915. According to current theories, the formation of Jupiter-mass planets ...

dateJul 15, 2015 in Astronomy
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Measuring the mass of a Mars-size exoplanet

Determining the size of an Earth-size exoplanet by the amount of starlight it blocks hundreds of light-years away once was the realm of science fiction. Measuring the mass of such a small planet based on its gravity was ...

dateJun 18, 2015 in Astronomy
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The minimum mass of a proto-solar system disk

Astronomers estimate that at the time the Solar system formed, its proto-planetary disk contained the equivalent of about twenty Jupiter-masses of gas and dust. This so-called "minimum mass solar nebula (MMSN)" is derived ...

dateOct 19, 2015 in Astronomy
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