About the Object

Category: Illustrations

Artist’s impression of protoplanetary disc

This is an artist’s impression of a young star surrounded by a protoplanetary disc.

An international team of astronomers have used the NASA/ESA/Webb James Webb Space Telescope to study the disc around a young and very low-mass star. The results reveal the richest hydrocarbon chemistry seen to date in a protoplanetary disc (including the first extrasolar detection of ethane) and contribute to our evolving understanding of the diversity of planetary systems.

The science team explored the region around a very low-mass star of 0.11 solar masses (known as ISO-ChaI 147). These observations provide insights into the environment as well as basic ingredients for such planets to form. The team found that the gas in the planet-forming region of the star is rich in carbon. This could potentially be because carbon is removed from the solid material from which rocky planets can form, and could explain why Earth is relatively carbon-poor.

[Image description: At the centre of the image, a bright light source illuminates a surrounding disc, the colour of which transitions from bright yellow to darker orange. The image background is black.]



About the Image

Id: weic2416a
Type: Artwork
Release date: 6 June 2024, 20:00
Related releases: weic2416
Size: 3000 x 2400 px

Image Formats

Download IconLarge JPEG 593.4 KB
Download IconScreensize JPEG 105.9 KB



Download Icon1024x768 127.9 KB
Download Icon1280x1024 178.6 KB
Download Icon1600x1200 244.4 KB
Download Icon1920x1200 307.6 KB
Download Icon2048x1536 346.2 KB

Also see our