Say Hello To Our Sun’s Fourth Nearest Neighbour

Say Hello To Our Sun’s Fourth Nearest Neighbour

Suns fourth nearest neighbour.jpg

NASA’s WISE and Spitzer Telescope have discovered an unusual neighbour. 7.2 light years away is a brown dwarf. This neighbour is the fourth nearest star-like object to our Sun and it is unusal because it is the coldest brown dwarf ever found. The temperature of this brown dwarf is similar to our own North pole. Previously the coldest brown dwarves have been about room temperature. What is a brown dwarf? Good question. A brown dwarf starts life like a star as a collapsing ball of gas but due to a lack of mass they fail to ignite and support nuclear fusion.

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Image credit:

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Penn State University 

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