Exoplanet: DS Tuc Ab Has Two Stars

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An illustration of Kepler-47, another exoplanet orbiting around two suns.(Image: © NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle)

This Gassy ‘Preteen’ Exoplanet With 2 Suns Is Losing Its Atmosphere. But Why?

By Passant Rabbie Science.com

A “preteen” exoplanet, fully grown but still undergoing some changes, was recently discovered orbiting a young star in a binary system, and the find could provide some insight on how planets formed in our own solar system.

Scientists at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire observed the planet using NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), which launched in April on a mission to look for alien planets orbiting the brightest stars in the night sky. The planet was discovered in November 2018 by NASA satellite and later confirmed by the group of scientists at Dartmouth in March.

The exoplanet, named DS Tuc Ab, was found in a two-star system (it has two suns) but only orbits one of its stellar parents. It makes one orbit every eight Earth days, researchers said. They estimated the star system to be around 45 million years old. For comparison, our solar system is around 4.6 billion years old.

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