SPACE PHOTOS THIS WEEK: Giant Star, Mars Aurorae, More

SPACE PHOTOS THIS WEEK: Giant Star, Mars Aurorae, More
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November 18, 2008--An artist's rendering shows a Jupiter-like planet being engulfed by an expanding red giant star.

Astronomers have discovered a new exoplanet that is orbiting closer to its red giant host than any other known world is to its respective central star. The find could shed light on how changes in aging stars affect the planets around them.

"Our own sun one day will become a red giant, and it is interesting to think about what will happen to the outer planets of our solar system as the sun expands," said researcher Alexander Wolszczan of Penn State University.
—Image by NASA
 
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