An international team of astronomers has discovered an infant planet orbiting an infant star, adding to a very small list of the youngest planets ever found.
The team of international astronomers has had their research accepted for publication in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, which details the discovery of the planet named 2M0437b. What makes this planet special is that it's newly formed and can be directly observed with telescopes, paving the way forward for researchers to garner a deeper understanding of planet formation, and thus the evolution of Earth.
The team of researchers estimates that the planet is a couple more times massive than Jupiter and formed with its host star only several million years ago. According to the KeckObservatory website, the planet formed "around the time the main Hawaiian Islands first emerged above the ocean". The planet and its host star reside are located 417 light-years from Earth in what astronomers call a stellar "nursery", a region of space that is producing stars and planets at a high rate.
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