Scientists Locate Largest Solar System in the GalaxyDaniel McCarthy (Author) Published Date : Jan 28, 2016 17:20 IST
A planet, which was thought to be floating freely in space, actually is in a huge orbit around a star that is more than 1 trillion kilometers off in the distance.
That is according to a group of astronomers from Australia, the U.S. and the UK, who revealed earlier this week that the planet named 2Mass J2126 has an orbit that takes it around its star that is 7,000-times bigger that the orbit of Earth around the sun.
One of the astronomers from the UK said the planet system is the widest found thus far and the members have been known for eight years, but no one has made a link between them before.
The planet is not as lonely as first thought, but is certainly a great distance from its sun.
Previously it was though that 2MASS J2126 had been a free floating or what is called a rogue planet that is adrift in space not tethered to any particular star.
However, the observations made of this planet and star, have revealed that the two were moving together through space and appeared to have an association.
How a planetary system so wide forms and then survives is a question not yet answered, said another of the team of astronomers.
At over 1 trillion kms from its star, the planet has the widest orbit of all planets that have been found, and one that takes close to 900,000 years from start to finish.
2MASS J2126 and star are over 104 light years from Earth. We might have a distant cousin that orbits right near the edge of our solar system according to what was published earlier this month.
California Institute of Technology researchers found evidence that in the outer part of our solar systems there is an object that could the ninth planet that would replace Pluto, which was downgraded to dwarf planet status.
The planet was named Planet Nine and is approximately 10 times Earth s size and is orbiting 20 times farther away from the sun than is Neptune and would need 10,000 to 20,000 years to make a complete orbit of the sun.
Scientists Locate Largest Solar System in the Galaxy