Apocalypse Preview: A Distant Dead Planet Could Mirror Earth’s Final Fate

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Just recently, while looking deep into outer space at a distant star, astronomers have spied an orbiting fragment of a dead, shattered planet.

What’s interesting is that this planet could be a preview of Earth’s final fate and also the one of our solar system.

USA Today reports that in a new study that has been released Thursday, experts said that they have just discovered one of the first small planet fragments in orbit around a dead white dwarf star.

Scientists said that this finding “sheds light into the twilight years of planetary systems.”

The online publication cites Space.com and says that the newfound planet chunk is probably a little part of a world that has been destroyed during the star’s death throes.

The chunk could be a piece of the core of the planet

The chunk may even be a piece of the shattered planet’s core.

Any piece of a planet, even if it’s small, could be able to survive close to the incredibly strong gravity of a white dwarf and this is remarkable according to experts.

The chunk orbits around the white dwarf every two hours and this must be unusually dense and smaller than 250 miles in diameter in order to avoid being ripped apart by the star’s gravitational forces, says the study.

Both the dead star and planet are within our very own Milky Way galaxy about 410 light years away from our planet.

USA Today reports that the fate of the star and its planet somehow mirrors our solar system’s future.

Science magazine reported that “It is thought that when the sun swells into a red giant, it will consume Mercury, Venus, and Earth. It will then shrink down to a dead white dwarf, similar to the one just discovered.”

The publication also said, “Not a pretty thought, but we do have about 6 billion years to contemplate our fate.”


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