Astronomers find two planetary systems | Science News



Support credible science journalism.

Subscribe to Science News today.


Astronomers find two planetary systems

11:16am, January 12, 2001

Planet hunters this week announced they had found two planetary systems, one of which resides only 15 light-years from Earth. Each system features a star roughly similar to the sun and a bizarre entourage that defies ready explanation and may provide fresh insight into planet formation.

Among the 50 or so stars where extrasolar planets have been detected, astronomers have reported only one with more than a single planet (SN: 4/17/99, p. 244). The new finds harbor several surprises. One system features an orbiting body so massive it may qualify as a failed star. The other system features two planets with an unusual orbital harmony.

A team led by Geoffrey W. Marcy of the University of California, Berkeley and R. Paul Butler of the Carnegie Instituti

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from this issue of Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content