The Universe is an immense space filled with numerous surprises. One of them is represented by a humongous object that floats around on the outskirts of our solar system, which scientists believe that it may be a rogue planet, although they aren’t so sure yet.
By using radio-telescope technology, scientists came across this object that has planetary-mass (hence the deduction that it may be a rogue planet) and its position is at only 20 light-years away from us. Apparently, it has almost 13 times the mass of Jupiter, making it a really big planet and curious enough, it doesn’t seem to orbit around a parent star (like Earth does around the Sun).
The study’s lead researcher Melodie Kao spoke about the uncertainty that surrounds this mysterious object. Apparently, it rests at the borderline between a planet and a brown dwarf (which is a ‘failed star’). Although it requires further studying, it still provides enough surprising data so that scientists can use to start understanding more about the magnetic processes present both on stars and planets.
If you don’t know what a brown dwarf is, then allow us to instruct you. Think of something that’s too big to be a planet, yet it isn’t able of functioning as a star. That’s a brown dwarf. This object was first discovered in 2016 and at the moment it was believed that it was really a brown dwarf. However, the latest data show it to be younger and smaller than what was considered initially, so its classification as a planet isn’t out of the question yet.
Cooler than the Sun and with a magnetic field 200 times stronger than Jupiter, SIMP J01365663+0933473 (that’s its name) still requires more studying. Using a very powerful radio astronomy observatory from New Mexico, scientists are able of further gathering data from such exoplanets.
Dee Mongo is a graduate of UFT. She’s based in Toronto and has written for Maclean’s, Motherboard, the National Post, and the Huffington Post. In her spare time, she plays AC/DC on the ukulele and does psychic readings for B-grade celebrities. Dee is our tech/finance correspondent.