posted on Feb, 8 2005 @ 08:35 AM
New observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope reveal surprisingly large dust clouds around several stars. These clouds most likely flared up
when rocky, embryonic planets smashed together. The Earth's own Moon may have formed from such a catastrophe. Prior to these new results, astronomers
thought planets were formed under less chaotic circumstances.
Astronomers have found the smallest known celestial body with planet-building material around it, providing a clue to how planets form and raising
the question of whether life could emerge in such a system, NASA said.
A disc of dusty material surrounding a so-called "brown dwarf,'' or "failed star'' was found six months ago by astronomer Kevin Luhman and
colleagues at the Gemini Observatory in Chile, using NASA's orbiting Spitzer Space Telescope, the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration
said in a statement e-mailed early today.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
As I understand it Hubble also played a large roll in this discovery although it is not mentioned in the article.
The sad part of this is that lack of funding will end the Hubble program in the near future. Imagine what we could learn if they did not end Hubble
[edit on 8-2-2005 by Banshee]