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Hubble image of protoplanetary systems

Hubble image of protoplanetary systems

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Credit

NASA / ESA / STSCI / C.O'DELL, RICE U. / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / ESA / STSCI / C.O'DELL, RICE U. / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Protoplanetary discs. Five protoplanetary discs, also known as proplyds, discovered by the Hubble Space Telescope in the Orion Nebula (M42). Four of them are seen as bright brown spots and the last one at top centre is black. These are protoplanetary discs which surround recently born stars; they are formed by gas and dust and are roughly twice the size of the Solar System. They might evolve and, following a process of condensation, form planetary systems similar to our Solar System. The brown ones are illuminated by radiation of nearby stars whereas the black one is the furthest away from bright stars.

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