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Thread: Planets possible around double stars.

  1. #1 Planets possible around double stars. 
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    Astronomers have announced that a sequence of images collected with the Smithsonian's Submillimeter Array (SMA) clearly reveals the presence of a rotating molecular disk orbiting the young binary star system V4046 Sagittarii. The SMA images provide an unusually vivid snapshot of the process of formation of giant planets, comets, and Pluto-like bodies. The results also confirm that such objects may just as easily form around double stars as around single stars like our Sun.


    http://www.takefreetime.com/2009/06/...-orbiting.html


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  3. #2  
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    Hmm, curious. I wonder, why they do not show those images even in the press release. All they show is a suggestive artificial drawing.

    http://www.cfa.harvard.edu/news/2009/pr200913.html

    This is an interesting find indeed. In particular with the age estimate of the two stars having about 12 million years. The question is now: Has this supposed disc been stable for most of that time? Or do we see just a snapshot of the disc being dispersed by the tidal interaction with the binary in the centre? So, I guess, the only solid conclusion one might draw here is that there might be stage in the evolution of a young stellar system, where a stationary ring of dust and gas may be present. Whether this is enough to speculate that eventually planets may form out of this is another question.

    The observation was apparently presented during an AAS (American Astronomical Society) symposium. The abstract of the presentation given there is provided here:

    http://esoads.eso.org/abs/2009AAS...21431504R

    Let's wait for the real publication.


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    I suppose some complicated orbits are possible around two stars. Lost in Space, not known for it's science, did a few episodes based on such a planet where it went from extreme cold to extreme heat.
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    The two starts of this binary system are only five solar 5 solar diameters apart from one another. At that close range they aren't going to be very disruptive to anything but the most innermost ring.
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  6. #5  
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    In my opinion planetary systems are formed namely in binary systems. Our solar system is no exception to this rule. The role of the second component in it make an underdeveloped Star - the Jupiter, which is formed by special way. Then Jupiter promotes formation of other planets. http://www.thescienceforum.com/viewt...=15901&start=0
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  7. #6  
    Hal
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    Just a question came to mind.

    In a binary star system, what is the orientation of the rotation of the two stars?
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  8. #7  
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    While it is impossible to answer to this question. The rotation of the star is shown whilst on the Doppler effect (it is visible as broadening of spectral lines). But the Doppler effect does not provide complete information. For example, if either the north or the south pole directed at us, we shall find out nothing.
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    There would be a problem is the two stars were sufficiently close to take mass from each other, even if it were little more than redirecting the solar winds.
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  10. #9  
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    http://www.space.com/scienceastronom...rd-planet.html
    Newfound Planet Orbits Backward

    A newfound planet orbits the wrong way, backward compared to the rotation of its host star. Its discoverers think a near-collision may have created the retrograde orbit, as it is called.
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