An international team of astronomers, including researchers from the University of Cambridge, has made the most detailed image of the ring of dusty debris surrounding a young star and found that the ice content of colliding comets within it is similar to comets in our own solar system.
Astronomers have found the first evidence of comets around a star similar to the sun, providing an opportunity to study what our solar system was like as a ‘baby’.
Latest research has uncovered a massive clump of carbon monoxide in a young solar system. The gas is the result of near constant collisions of icy comets – suggesting vast swarms of tightly packed comets in thrall to the gravitational pull of an as-yet-unseen exoplanet.
Astronomers using the Herschel Space Observatory have detected massive debris discs around two nearby stars hosting low-mass planets. The discovery suggests that debris discs may survive more easily in planetary systems without high-mass planets.