Gigantic alien ‘planet’ found 22,000 light years from Earth, and it’s 13 times Jupiter’s size

This mysterious object found at the heart of our galaxy is so massive that scientists are unsure whether it’s actually a planet or a brown dwarf.

Scientists have spotted a gigantic “planet” hidden in the center of the Milky Way’s galactic bulge, announced the Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute in a paper, submitted by researcher Yoon-Hyun Ryu to the Cornell University Library.

The object, dubbed “OGLE-2016-BLG-1190Lb,” is circling a star about 22,000 light years away from Earth, and is 13 times larger than Jupiter—our solar system’s largest planet.

©Getty Images | MARK GARLICK

“We report the discovery of OGLE-2016-BLG-1190Lb, which is likely to be the first Spitzer microlensing planet in the galactic bulge/bar, an assignation that can be confirmed by two epochs of high-resolution imaging of the combined source-lens baseline object,” the paper reads.

©Getty Images | Bill Ingalls/NASA 

OGLE-2016-BLG-1190Lb was uncovered in June 2016 in a microlensing event hosted by the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment (OGLE) collaboration, a Polish astronomical project that searches for dark matter and extrasolar planets in the universe.

©NASA

A large international team of researchers found the object while analyzing data obtained by NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope, an infrared space telescope launched in 2003.

And by utilizing microlensing, a method capable of discovering planets at truly great distances from the Earth, scientists were able to spot the mysterious object, which orbits its parent star roughly every three years.

“Microlensing” technique measures distortion in lights by using background stars as flashlights.

©YouTube Screenshot | SETI Institute

However, due to its massive size, scientists aren’t able to determine whether it’s really a planet, or a brown dwarf, also known as a failed star. Brown dwarfs are substellar objects that range from 13 to 90 times the mass of Jupiter, but, they lack sufficient mass to “ignite” as stars do.

“The planet’s mass places it right at the deuterium burning limit, i.e., the conventional boundary between ‘planets’ and ‘brown dwarfs,’” the paper reads.

©NASA

OGLE-2016-BLG-1190Lb was found right at the edge of the brown-dwarf desert.

©Getty Images | Danita Delimont

“Since the existence of the brown dwarf desert is the signature of different formation mechanisms for stars and planets, the extremely close proximity of OGLE-2016-BLG-1190Lb to this desert raises the question of whether it is truly a ‘planet’ (by formation mechanism) and therefore reacts back upon its role tracing the galactic distribution of planets,” the author wrote in the paper, as reported by phys.org.

It’ll be interesting to see what this alien “planet” turns out to be. Let’s hope we receive an update in the near future. It’s a big universe out there!

 
Have You Heard About This?

100 million people were practicing these exercises by 1999—where on earth are they today?

100 million people were practicing these exercises by 1999—where on earth are they today?
If you've ever been to China, you've probably seen that people enjoy practicing various forms of qigong exercises ...
READ MORE >
 
Top Hot
This mixed bag of animal antics will leave you in hysterics—now THAT’S entertainment
These animals' comical acts in this mixed bag of clips are so hilarious one can't help but marvel at ...
READ MORE >
These fake Chinese foods could kill you. Let’s hope this plastic rice isn’t in your supermarket
These fake Chinese foods could kill you.  Let’s hope this plastic rice isn’t in your supermarket
Most of us who live in the West have enjoyed fine Chinese food at some time in our ...
READ MORE >
1-yr-old cancer patient is stuck in hospital. When this doctor arrives—her troubles melt away
This beautiful, heartwarming video shows Dr. Paulo Martins singing and playing his ukulele to entertain one of his young ...
READ MORE >
 
 
Story of Conviction
As a boy, he didn't go home like the other kids after school. He'd complete his homework on ...
READ MORE >
“Only God could change him.” This is what people said behind my back. I was a thief, a ...
READ MORE >
 
RELATED