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Portrait of a youthful planet

New images confirm youngest extrasolar planet ever photographed circling a star

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1:50pm, June 10, 2010

New images have confirmed that a tiny point of light first photographed near the star Beta Pictoris in 2003 is indeed an orbiting planet, one of only a handful of extrasolar planets ever imaged. At a youthful 12 million years of age, the planet, which weighs the equivalent of nine Jupiters, is the youngest ever directly recorded orbiting a star, providing firm evidence that massive planets can form in a hurry.

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