Free Newsletters - Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear
by Staff Writers
Pasadena, Calif. (UPI) Jul 10, 2013
Gaps in dusty disks around young stars, thought by many astronomers to be indicative of planet formation, can occur without planets, U.S. scientists say.
Wladimir Lyra at the California Institute of Technology and Marc Kuchner of NASA say interactions between dust and gas can produce some of the key patterns previously attributed to planets.
Writing in the journal Nature, they said the presence of gas around a star changes the dynamics within the surrounding disk of dust in a way that can produce observed gaps without the presence of planets.
They reported computer simulations suggest the interactions between dust particles and gas can organize the dust into narrow, eccentric rings, similar to the debris disk around a nearby star called Fomalhaut.
The study results may explain why reports of a possible pair of planets within the Fomalhaut debris disk, assumed to be creating patterns within the disc due to their gravitational effects, have been difficult to confirm, they said.
Lands Beyond Beyond - extra solar planets - news and science
Life Beyond Earth
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|