Monday, March 18, 2013

Tiny Star System Found On Galactic Doorstep

Spanning the gap between large planets and small stars lies an astronomical gray area. This is the domain of brown dwarfs, dim stellar cinders glowing faintly in the darkness. And a binary pair of these stars has just been discovered only 6.5 light-years away, making it the third closest star system to our own.

Star system WISE J104915.57-531906 was announced officially just a few days ago. The tiny star system, orbiting each other once every 25 years, with a separation of 3 AU, was discovered by Kevin Luhman, a researcher at Penn State’s Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds. It is, in fact, the closest star system to be discovered since Barnard’s Star was found in 1916!

Full article: … -doorstep-130315.htm

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