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New Planets
White dwarf and remnant planetary system
05/04/12

 

This depicts what the researchers are now observing. A white dwarf sits in the centre of the remnant of a planetary system. Asteroid sized debris is scattered inwards by interaction with the remaining planets and is tidally disrupted as it approaches the white dwarf forming a disc of dust some of which is raining down onto the star. The researchers have found that the composition of the debris that has just fallen onto the four white dwarfs matches the composition of Earth-like rocky worlds. Credit: © Mark A. Garlick / space-art.co.uk / University of Warwick



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