Video of an alien solar system

There is a star in the constellation of Pegasus that is 129 light years from Earth. It’s a young star, a mere 50 million years old (cf the sun is 4.5 billion years old (ish) This star, HR 8799, has planets, hot planets far bigger than Jupiter and Saturn that swing around it in vast orbits.

Scientists at the National Research Council of Canada‚Äôs Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics collected data from this distant solar system over the last few years and Jason Wang at the Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) made the images into a “video”. You are looking at another solar system. This warrants an OMG on a cosmic scale. Jennifer Harrison waxed lyrical about this “footage” on twitter earlier so thanks to her for bringing it to my attention.

The orbits are not complete, of course, the scientists have only been watching the system since 2009. A year on the closest planet to the star lasts 40 earth years, the most distant planet takes 400 earth years to do a complete circuit.