70 New Rogue Exoplanets Spotted by Astronomers
by Christopher Plain | The Debrief
70 rogue exoplanets, or planets not bound to a host star, have been discovered wandering through the Milky Way galaxy. Described as a “breakthrough discovery,” the newly identified rogue exoplanets could help researchers better understand how these space bodies develop and ultimately become divorced from their host solar systems.
Background: Rogue Exoplanets Difficult To Spot
“Unlike planets in our solar system or in exoplanetary systems, rogue planets do not orbit a star but wander alone,” explained Hervé Bouy, an astronomer at the Laboratoire d’Astrophysique de Bordeaux, in a story for Newsweek. “They are special because their properties contain imprints of the mechanisms involved in star and planet genesis that are in many ways much more legible and informative than those of more massive counterparts.”
Unfortunately, rogue planets are incredibly difficult to spot since they are not close to a light-producing star. Now, the team behind the latest discovery have improved rogue exoplanet detection methods, leading to the “breakthrough” discovery.