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Protoplanetary disc around Fomalhaut

Protoplanetary disc around Fomalhaut

R650/0168

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57.6 MB (3.2 MB compressed)

5219 x 3856 pixels

44.2 x 32.8 cm ⏐ 17.4 x 12.9 in (300dpi)

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Credit

DAVID A. HARDY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID A. HARDY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Alien solar system formation. Artwork of a young solar system forming from a disc of gas and dust around the star Fomalhaut (Alpha Piscis Austrini). This white star lies around 25 light years from Earth in the constellation Piscis Austrinus. A large disc of gas and dust has been detected around it, and gaps seen in this disc could represent paths swept clear of dust by recently- formed planets (such as the one at lower left). It is though that our solar system formed in a similar way, the planets gradually coalescing from a rotating disc of material left over from the formation of the Sun.

Release details

Model release not required. Property release not required.

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