How complete is our census of the Sun’s closest neighbors? Astronomers using NSF’s NOIRLab facilities and a team of data-sleuthing volunteers participating in Backyard Worlds: Planet 9, a citizen science project, have discovered roughly 100 cool worlds near the Sun — objects more massive than planets but lighter than stars, known as brown dwarfs. Several of these newly discovered worlds are among the very coolest known, with a few approaching the temperature of Earth — cool enough to harbor water clouds.


NOIRLab/NSF/AURA/P. Marenfeld/A. Meisner, Jonathan Gagné (Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium), Jacqueline Faherty (American Museum of Natural History) 


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Release date:Aug. 18, 2020, 8:28 a.m.
Related releases:noirlab2020
Duration:01 m 00 s
Frame rate:29.97

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