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Ancient planet in M4 globular cluster

Ancient planet in M4 globular cluster

R650/0173

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Credit

NASA / ESA / STSCI / G.BACON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / ESA / STSCI / G.BACON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Ancient planet. Artwork of a 13 billion-year-old gas giant planet with a rich background of stars in its home, the M4 globular star cluster. It was detected by Hubble Space Telescope measurements of the two stars (lower left) that it orbits: a white dwarf star, seen at right of a pulsar (B1620-26, neutron star) that is emitting two jets. The white dwarf star and pulsar are the remains of burnt-out stars. The planet is the oldest planet discovered, because globular star cluster stars were among the first to form in the universe. M4 is around 7000 light years away in the constellation of Scorpius. For the planet's location, see image R614/244.

Release details

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