Scientists discover six alien worlds that are an exceptional hidden jewel in the Milky Way

Researchers discovered a system of six exoplanets all orbiting a star in perfect harmony, a demonstration of an essentially untouched region of space.

1 minute & 8 seconds read time

A team of scientists has discovered six exoplanets orbiting a star called HD 110076, and what's interesting about these exoplanets is that they are in a rare phenomenon known as a chain of resonance.

So, what is a chain of resonance? This phenomenon occurs when two bodies orbiting a third body interact with each other gravitationally, and their orbital periods line up. Notably, these orbital periods don't have to line up 1:1. An example of this phenomenon is Pluto and Neptune - Pluto completes 2 orbits around the Sun for every 3 of Neptune's, creating a resonance of 2:3. Another example is some of Jupiter's moons such as Ganymede, Europa, and Io. For every 1 of Ganymede's orbits, Europa completes 2 orbits and Io 4 orbits, creating a 1:2:4 chain.

Using telescope's, the researchers discovered six exoplanets that vary in size from 1.94 to 2.85 times the size of Earth. As for their orbital periods; 9.11 days, 13.67 days, 20.52 days, 30.79 days, 41.06 days, and 54.77 days (from the innermost exoplanet to the outermost). Their chain of resonance is as follows: 3:2, 3:2, 3:2, 4:3, and 4:3. This discovery marks just the sixth system known to date with six exoplanets in a chain of resonance, and due to the chain of resonance still being untouched, it represents a region of space that has hardly been influenced by outside forces such as asteroid impacts and planetary migration.

"The current delicate configuration of the planetary orbits in HD 110067 rules out any violent event over the billion-year history of the system, making it a rare 'fossil' to study migration mechanisms and the properties of its protoplanetary disk in a pristine environment," write the researchers.

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science, space, and artificial intelligence news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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