Research

Gigantic Rogue Planet Found Lurking Outside Our Solar System

Gigantic Rogue Planet Found Lurking Outside Our Solar System

Astronomers have detected a possible "rogue" planetary-mass object with a surprisingly powerful magnetic field travelling through space unaccompanied by any parent star.

The new discovery, made with the National Science Foundation's Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array telescopes in New Mexico, marks the first radio observations of a planetary-mass object beyond our solar system.

Though not as hot as our Sun, this newly discovered object is quite toasty at about 1,500 degree Fahrenheit.

It's thought that SIMP J01365663+0933473 is only 200 million years-old and is just 20 light-years away from Earth. For comparison, the Sun has a surface temperature of 5,500 degrees Celsius or nearly 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit. It is 12 times bigger than Jupiter and has a very odd feature: it does not orbit any star.

Brown dwarfs have long baffled experts because they're too big to be considered planets but are not big enough to be stars.

SIMP is not small; and is about 12 times larger than Jupiter and has a strong magnetic field, say the astronomers.

Brown dwarfs were predicted to exist all the way in the 1960s, but the first one was only discovered in 1995, confirming the initial theories.

More news: Lucas Perez: West Ham close to signing of Arsenal's Spanish forward

Astronomers have discovered a rogue planet that's nearly too big to be considered a planet - and to top it off, the rogue object is a magnetic powerhouse.

Astronomers originally came to the conclusion that the object was a brown dwarf because of its mass and because it does not revolve around a star like a planet typically does.

It is these radio signatures emitted by the auroras of such rogue objects that allow researchers to detect them.

The Caltech team that originally detected its radio emission in 2016 had observed it again in a new study at even higher radio frequencies and confirmed that its magnetic field was even stronger than what they had measured the first time.

The auroras on our planet are caused by its magnetic field interacting with the solar wind (the continuous flow of charged particles from the sun's upper atmosphere, known as the corona, that permeates the solar system). Scientists theorise that one possibility is having a planet or moon interact with the dwarf's magnetic field.

The unusually strong magnetic field "presents huge challenges to our understanding of the dynamo mechanism that produces the magnetic fields in brown dwarfs and exoplanets and helps drive the auroras we see", said Caltech's Gregg Hallinan.

The difference between what constitutes gas giants and brown dwarfs is a matter of serious debate among astronomers, says NRAO.


  • Ruby Rose to play Batwoman for The CW's Arrowverse

    Ruby Rose to play Batwoman for The CW's Arrowverse

    Adding to that, DC Comics describes her as having "self-destructive tendencies when it comes to personal relationships". We're eager to see her take on the character, and hopefully see her shine in her own series soon.
    3 reasons why Liverpool will be title contenders this season

    3 reasons why Liverpool will be title contenders this season

    Liverpool will be hoping to take their pre-season form into their Premier League campaign when West Ham come to town this weekend.

    U.S. zoo closed after hail storm injures 5, kills birds

    Had to hunker down and get over our kids. "The bears were running around and there was no cover available for them", he said. The Hobsons joined dozens of others taking shelter in the reptile exhibit, a large multi-room building at the park.
  • Boris Johnson told by Tory chair to apologise for burka comments

    Boris Johnson told by Tory chair to apologise for burka comments

    Lewis said he agreed with Foreign Office minister Alistair Burt that Johnson's comments had a "degree of offence". Many expect Ms May to face a leadership challenge if faltering Brexit negotiations don't improve.
    Master Chief is confirmed to star in Showtime’s Halo series

    Master Chief is confirmed to star in Showtime’s Halo series

    I guess looking back on it, it would be insane for the Halo series to NOT include the most famous Spartan space marine. Nevins said he thinks it "will have enormous appeal to Halo fans and also appeal to the Showtime drama fans".
    Congo's health ministry confirms 3 more cases of Ebola

    Congo's health ministry confirms 3 more cases of Ebola

    An additional 43 suspected cases of Ebola were reported, including 13 confirmed by lab testing, according to WHO. Tarik Jasarevic from the World Health Organization explains why it is so hard to deal with the latest outbreak.
  • Apple Boots Alex Jones From iTunes For Hate Speech

    Apple Boots Alex Jones From iTunes For Hate Speech

    Fans of Infowars radio host Alex Jones have flocked to the Apple App Store to grab what's left of his voice on social media. Spotify, YouTube, and Facebook have all only removed several individual broadcasts by Jones.
    Elite Dota 2 Team Easily Beat by Advanced AI Bots

    Elite Dota 2 Team Easily Beat by Advanced AI Bots

    Since OpenAI's Dota 2 bot beat professional player Danylo "Dendi" Ishutin at the global 2017, the AI has evolved significantly. These are all people who now or previously play Dota 2 professionally - they're in the 99.95th percentile of human players.
    2018 primary election: Check back for results from statewide and local races

    2018 primary election: Check back for results from statewide and local races

    National Democrats have turned their attention to the district since Arrington, a first-term member of the S.C. Polls close in Michigan, Kansas, and Missouri at 8 PM ET and polls will close in Washington at 11 PM ET.
  • MCU Movies to Move from Netflix to Disney's Streaming Service

    MCU Movies to Move from Netflix to Disney's Streaming Service

    This service will rival Netflix, though Iger has said in the past that it will cost "significantly less" than Netflix. In the final minutes of trading on Tuesday, shares hit $116.56, an increase of nearly 10 percent from a year ago.
    Sunday storm chances followed by cooler weather

    Sunday storm chances followed by cooler weather

    However, next weekend will not be a wash out but if you have outdoor plans best to do it earlier in the day rather than later. Highs will stay in the 80s on Tuesday and Wednesday , with a 20-percent chance for storms each afternoon.
    Imran Khan questioned by Pakistan's anti-graft body

    Imran Khan questioned by Pakistan's anti-graft body

    Notification of victory from Islamabad was withheld for a case related to violation of election code of conduct against Mr Khan. PTI spokesperson Fawad Chaudhry said the party will nominate Imran at a parliamentary committee meeting.