A planetary fragment orbits the white dwarf, leaving a tail of gas in its wake, caused by collisions with debris. Image: University of Warwick/Mark Garlick
Planet surviving the death of a star - space short science news

For the first time, astronomers have obtained direct evidence that a planet has survived the destructive forces of a dying star. The planet’s survival might be linked to it being composed of iron and nickle.

The planet did not survive unharmed, and researchers believe that the planet as has been seen now is only a fragment of the original planet. The planet is situated in a big disk of debris, probably from other planets, surrounding the star.

The dead star (white dwarf) was of similar size of our Sun, which makes this discovery even more interesting, as it might help to understand what will happen to Earth when the Sun dies some six billion years from now.

Read the full story: Warwick University
Scientific publication: Science