HONOLULU, Hawaii - Astronomers have captured the first direct image of a planet being born.
Adam Kraus, of the University of Hawaii's Institute for Astronomy, said the planet is being formed out of dust and gas circling a 2-milion-year-old star about 450 light years from Earth.
The planet itself, based on scientific models of how planets form, is estimated to have started taking shape about 50,000 to 100,000 years ago.
Called LkCa 15 b, it's the youngest planet ever observed. The previous record holder was about five times older.
Kraus and his colleague, Michael Ireland from Macquarie University and the Australian Astronomical Observatory, used Keck telescopes on Mauna Kea to find the planet.
"We're catching this object at the perfect time. We see this young star, it has a disc around it that planets are probably forming out of and we see something right in the middle of a gap in the disc," Kraus said in a telephone interview.
Kraus presented the discovery Wednesday at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland. Kraus and Ireland's research paper on the discovery is due to appear in The Astrophysical Journal.
Read more here: http://ca.news.yahoo.com/hawaii-astronomer-captures-first-image-planet-forming-around-001910410.html
Courtesy of Yahoo News Canada
What are you worrying for? You are not getting out of this life alive, dead don't hurt, getting there might, and in some cases, damn well should!
Plus during and after the next Ice Age, all of this infrastructure around us won't matter squat!