In a new find, scientists have come to know that the ring of a distant young star is much stranger than it was previously thought. The name of the young star is HR 4796A and it is situated almost 237 light years away from Earth. The star has a bright ring around it but what fascinated scientists was the huge amount of debris surrounding the ring.
The scientists call it the ring of debris and this vast, complex dust structure is about 150 billion miles wide. Scientists had previously known that the HR 4796A had a small, bright, inner ring of dust but now, they are surprised to find such a huge ring of debris enveloping the young star. The astronomers used NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope to discover this strange dust structure around the star. The researchers of the latest study stated that the resulting images unambiguously revealed that the bright narrow debris ring is embedded with a much larger, morphologically complex, and biaxially asymmetric exo-ring scattering structure.
The scientists say that this huge ring of debris might have implications about how the planetary system looks like around the HR 4796A star which is almost 8 million years old. The star is currently in the early phase of planet construction. Lead author of the study Glenn Schneider of the University of Arizona, Tucson said that the dust distribution around HR 4796A star is a telltale sign of how dynamically interactive the inner system containing the ring is. Tucson and his team used the Hubble Telescope’s Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph to deeply analyze and map the small dust particles encircling the HR 4796A star system.
According to the researchers, the small fine dust particles or debris enveloping the young star might have performed due to the collision of newly developing baby planets near it. Then, the pressure of starlight coming from the star, which is almost 23 times more luminous than our Sun, might have expelled the dust particles far into space.
Scientists found out that the outer dust structure looked like a donut-shaped inner tube. The upper portion of the star appeared to have shockwave or bow wave and the bottom portion is truncated. Scientists are trying to figure out how the star got this type of strange shape. They are thinking that the companion star HR 4796B might be influencing the HR 4796A star’s shape owing to its gravitational pull. The latest study was published in The Astronomical Journal.