View Full Version : When a star twinkles...

2012-Mar-07, 04:35 AM
http://arxiv.org/abs/1203.0475 Beta Pictoris! One of the earliest known stars with a disk... and I have it in the Distant Galaxies section because a team noticed an interesting infrared excess in a part of Beta Pic's disk, and they examined it *very* closely with Herschal. Was it a forming planet? Everyone hoped so, I am sure. Bit no, it is a backround galaxy seen through the disk. Oh well. I like mysteries, and I like seeing them get solved, even of the answer is not as exciting as we'd hoped.

There has been some back-peddling in archives recently concerning discrete exoplanets. It will always be difficult to descriminate between background sources, sunspots, local debris and any other odd thing - including sampling errors that appear to be periodic disruptions in stellar light patterns.

Looking for exoplanets is challenging - and papers like this - ironically - validate the broader trend in exoplanet discovery: With better tools, we can dial-in and eliminate the errors.