Sibling to our Sun

The star HD162826 is our solar sibling

The star HD162826 is our solar sibling

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download_blue.jpgAstronomers discover a star formed in the same solar nursery as our Sun.

 

When our Sun formed 4.6 billion years ago, it did so in a stellar nursery with thousands of other stars, some larger, many smaller, and a few just like our star. But in the intervening time, all the stellar siblings have drifted apart and been scattered all across the galaxy. Dr. Ivan Ramirez, an astronomer with the McDonald Observatory at the University of Texas, Austin, has been searching for our Sun's siblings and has found the first one. It's a Sun-like star only 110 light-years away. These sorts of stars should be high on the priority list in the search for planets and life, as they're the ones most likely to have conditions and chemistry just like we have here on Earth.

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This item appeared on Quirks & Quarks on June 7, 2014