June 28, 2024 at 12:26 pm

Astronomers Have Discovered Planets That Don’t Rotate Around Stars And Drift In Absolute Darkness

by Trisha Leigh

Source: NASA

I’m sure there are poets out there who could take the idea of starless planets existing alone in the dark and turn it into some haunting and beautiful art.

For my part, I’m just glad no one has to live on barren, lonely rocks like those.

Scientists call them rogue planets, and have witnessed more than a few of them out there.

The European Space Agency issued a press release about what they’ve found using their Euclid space telescope.

In it, they describe seven “rogue” planets without stars to keep them warm. They’re also hunting facts about dark matter and dark energy.

Source: ESA

Some scientists posit that these free-floating planets could outnumber stars more than 20 to 1. They would have evaded telescopes because there’s no light shining on them, making them virtually impossible to spot.

Dr. Gavin Coleman, an astronomer not involved in the study, thinks the findings are stunning.

“We’ve all grown up with the Sun in the sky, and so to think of a planet just drifting throughout space with no star on their horizon is fascinating.”

And no, there is almost no chance they harbor life.

Source: ESA

Even so, ESA’s science director Carole Mundell says all of the images are thrilling.

“The second batch is no different. It’s no exaggeration to say that the results we’re seeing from Euclid are unprecedented.”

There is always something exciting about learning new things about the universe.

These mysterious planets are one more thing in a long line – one that will surely continue for decades to come.

If you thought that was interesting, you might like to read about a second giant hole has opened up on the sun’s surface. Here’s what it means.