Stochastic Scribbles
Random musings in a variety of subjects, from science to religion.

Image of planet around Sun-like star?

Canadian astronomers have used the Gemini North telescope at Hawaii to obtain what may be the first image of a planet orbiting another star similar to our own Sun. The spectrum from the light of the supposed planet indicates that it is too young and too small to be a small star, so they believe that it is indeed a planet.

Sun-like star 1RSX J160929.1-210524 in the center and a possible planet at the upper left

However, they will still need to use more traditional techniques that measure the effect of the planet on its parent star, such as wobbling due to the mutual gravitational pulls or a tiny reduction of starlight as the planet passes in front of the star, to confirm that it is really a planet and not a small star that just happens to look like it’s nearby. This could take a couple of years.