Beta Pictoris planet, infrared image

Beta Pictoris planet, infrared image

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Credit: A.-M. LAGRANGE ET AL./EUROPEAN SOUTHERN OBSERVATORY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Restrictions: This image may not be used by or to promote the arms, nuclear power or tobacco industries or any religious organisation, or in any discriminatory way, or to imply the endorsement by ESO of any product, service or activity

Caption: Beta Pictoris planet. Composite infrared image of the region around the star Beta Pictoris, with the star and its halo blanked out. Reflected light from the star's dust disc (red and yellow) was observed in 1996 with the ADONIS instrument on ESO's 3.6-metre telescope. At centre, the innermost part of the system was observed in 2003 with the NACO instrument on the VLT (Very Large Telescope). The white dot is thought to be a planet at a distance from its parent star eight times the Earth-Sun distance. Beta Pictoris is 64 light years from Earth, in the constellation Pictor. This image was published in November 2008.

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