Being able to make direct observations to better understand the formation of planets and their moons is not an easy and common situation, as you can imagine. But a group of lucky scientists succeeded and 400 light years away has done an exciting study of an emerging Solar system.
At the center of the study is a star and two gas giant planets around it. In this young system named PDS 70 has a star at the center and Jupiter-like gas giants continue to form around the star. The exciting thing about the work is an observation made using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA).
A satellite-forming disk has been observed around one of the planets:
Observation using ALMA, one of the gas giants in the PDS 70 system Around the planet PDS 70c giant moon forming disk observed. This type of observation has never been made before in history, and it is a very important discovery for us to see more closely and better understand the formation of both planets and moons.
Miriam Keppler, from the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy and co-author of the study, emphasized the importance of the discovery. More than 4000 exoplanets have been found so far, but all have been detected in mature systems. PDS 70b and PDS 70c, which form a system reminiscent of the Jupiter-Saturn couple, are the ones detected so far. the first exoplanets still in the process of formation” he said.
All scientists involved in the study to understand planet formation processes thinks it is a unique opportunity.