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BERLIN: Astronomers say they have captured the first confirmed image of a planet forming in the dust twirling around a young star.
On Monday, scientists said the planet appears as a bright spot in the snapshot taken using the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile.
Miriam Kepler of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany said slight indications of baby planets have been spotted before, but astronomers weren’t certain whether those observations might simply be features in the eddying dust.
In a paper to be published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, scientists describe the planet, located about three billion kilometers from the star PDS 70, as a gas giant bigger than Jupiter. They say it has a cloudy atmosphere and a surface temperature of 1,000 degrees Celsius (1,832 degrees Fahrenheit).