This is one of the most asked question among teenagers and students who like astronomy. Many of the star war fans already familiar with a fictional planet Tatooine with its two suns in the sky.
Scientists at the UK’s University of Bristol carried out a study of how these so-called circumbinary planets to find why they appear to be common in our Milky Way galaxy. Dr Zoe Leinhardt and colleagues from Bristol’s School of Physics performed complex computer simulations of the early stages of planet formation around the binary stars.
They used a sophisticated model that calculates the effect of gravity and physical collisions on and between one million planetary building blocks.
Their research, published in Astrophysical Journal Letters, shows that the majority of Tatooine-like planets must have formed much further away from the central binary stars and then migrated to their current location.
Dr Leinhardt said: “Our simulations show that the circumbinary disk is a hostile environment even for large, gravitationally strong objects. Taking into account data on collisions as well as the physical growth rate of planets, we found that Kepler 34b would have struggled to grow where we find it now.”
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