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LkCa 15 System

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Exoplanetary Scratchpad

[SysBP Img]

One of the two youngest stars (about a million years old) detected with evidence for a planet-forming circumstellar disk. Has an outer dust disk (which would envelop the Solar System) and a thin inner dust disk (which would fit inside Mercury's orbit). The inner disk is somewhat lopsided. Planet b was later detected, the youngest and first direct photograph of a protoplanet. It is a giant planet orbiting at Uranus-like distances and appears as a blue dot. It is about 1,000C and surrounded by a red structure about 500C, which could be material colliding into the protoplanet or being ejected from it. Its mass, and planetary status, still needs to be determined.

LkCa 15 System In the News

Debris Disk "Lanes" Detected (Nov 2007)

http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/071129-baby-solar-systems.html
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2007-11/uom-yss112907.php

Inner Disk Edge is Lopsided (Feb 2011)

Planet b Discovered and Imaged (Nov 2011)

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