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Fraser
2003-Dec-30, 02:41 AM
SUMMARY: Planet hunters have found more than 30 stars with gas giants in a tight orbit. This orbit seems to be caused by a race between a young gas giant and the star's planetary disk during early formation of the star system. It's too hot for them to form in their tight orbit; instead it's believed they're formed further out and then slowly pushed into the star by material in the new star system. In some cases the planet is gobbled up by the star, while sometimes the planet consumes the early planetary disk of material and survives.

What do you think about this story? Post your comments below.

Littlemews
2003-Dec-30, 05:50 AM
Cool finally I can see it with my own eyes :lol: I wish my telescope can observe those giants <_<

VanderL
2003-Dec-30, 12:03 PM
The theory of the formation of planets becomes "complexer and complexer", it starts to look like the epicycles of the planets. It seems that for every planet a whole new theory is necessary. A large percentage of (variable) stars have close-orbiting planets, maybe there&#39;s a clue to how planets are formed?

GOURDHEAD
2003-Dec-30, 05:32 PM
My guess is that the interplay between gravitational and magnetic fields as well as the cloud&#39;s initial angular momentum and the configuration of the disk material and the random variation amongst these parameters can account for most of the configurations discovered and yet to be discovered. Then we add gravitational slingshotting and the occasional capture to fill in the gaps. Try to imagine the complexity added by considering the many (maybe infinite) ways in which proto-stellar clouds might collide, or otherwise interact, and initiate star formation.
:unsure: :unsure: :unsure:

VanderL
2003-Dec-31, 12:57 AM
Why not start devising a theory that works for the most commonly found planets; close-orbiting gas giants around young stars. Work outward from there.

slate
2003-Dec-31, 05:42 AM
Shows just how improbable our existence really is. Now if we can just learn enough to deduce which point of light our neighbors might be basking under...

VanderL
2003-Dec-31, 10:28 AM
They could be literally basking inside a star, I&#39;ve read somewhere that one of Orion&#39;s stars is large enough to have planets circling inside it&#39;s outer "atmosphere". There have also been reports (I don&#39;t know if it&#39;s the same star) that stars show a variability in their lightcurve that suggests something is indeed circling inside them&#33;
That would mean our alien neighbours wouldn&#39;t know about the Universe unless we came knocking.
Cheers.

Planetwatcher
2004-Jan-01, 03:29 AM
Except for a couple planets orbeting pulsors, and one rouge, all the known exo-planets are gas giants, and nearly all of them are in closer orbits to their parent star then our gas giants are to our Sun.

So much in fact it appears that gas giants in close orbits, sometimes called rosters, are more the rule, with our Solar system being more the exception.

VanderL
2004-Jan-01, 12:49 PM
I just realise that we call them gas giants because their mass is the same or larger than Jupiter&#39;s, but maybe these giants aren&#39;t gaseous at all?

The Meal
2004-Jan-02, 04:31 PM
Originally posted by Planetwatcher@Dec 31 2003, 08:29 PM
So much in fact it appears that gas giants in close orbits, sometimes called rosters, are more the rule, with our Solar system being more the exception.
Isn&#39;t it the case that we&#39;re only seeing these sorts of systems because they&#39;re the only type of planetary system we&#39;re really *capable* of observing (due to wobble)? I&#39;d feel uncomfortable saying that our own solar system is more of an exception, but with our current capabilities it appears to be one.

Are we capable of observing an "inner planet" on the order of Earth or Mars that is orbiting a neighboring star? Or can we only observe those planets that have significant gravitational effects on their star?

~The Meal

VanderL
2004-Jan-02, 04:47 PM
The Meal, you&#39;re absolutely right that our detection method favours the detection of large planets, but the extremely close-orbiting giants were totally unexpected. We can&#39;t know if our solar system is the odd one out, until we are capable of finding the small planets as well. But since our system has it&#39;s own gas giants and we can find out the orbits of the same-sized planets as well, the fact we don&#39;t find many systems like our own should give us something to think about. 1. We need to find a model that predicts close-orbiting giants and 2. we should be prepared to think of our own system as unique.
Cheers.

damienpaul
2004-Jan-06, 03:04 PM
i would consider this solar system to be unique at this stage.....what are the odds of finding similar style systems?