Photo: Birth of an Earthlike Planet Spied By Spitzer



A sunlike star in a binary system is encircled by a warm disk of dust in this artist's conception. The system, which lies 424 light-years away, is most likely giving birth to a rocky, Earthlike planet, according to a new study of the dust's composition.

A second ring of icy dust farther out from the star could eventually be a source of water for the newborn planet.

Image courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech/JHUAPL


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