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Birth of Baby Planets Spotted Around Distant Star


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Astronomers have detected dust grains glomming together around a faraway star, capturing a snapshot of what appear to be newly forming alien planets caught in the act of being born.

Scientists used the Subaru Telescope in Hawaii to image the disk of dust and gas surrounding UX Tauri A, a young star found about 450 light-years from Earth in the constellation Taurus (The Bull). Analysis of the image revealed large and non-spherical dust particles — a telltale sign that grains are adhering to each other in a process that will eventually lead to planet formation, researchers said.

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