Updated 04:19 PM EDT, Sat, Sep 18, 2021

Super World Discovered: Life Possible? Planet Spotted With Mysterious Light Phenomenon

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A world beyond the realms of our solar system has been discovered by astronomers -- but it's more than just that.

Apparently, this "super world" is the first ringed-planet found by scientists outside the solar system, ABC reported. The planet has been called J1407b, and if we are to look closer, the celestial body may best be compared with our own system's Saturn.

The planet's ring system was spotted in 2012 by a team led by Eric Mamajek. Mamajek is an astronomer from the University of Rochester.

Recent analysis led by Leiden Observatory's Matthew Kenworthy revealed that the ring system is impressively gargantuan. As it turned out, planet J1407b's surrounding configuration consists of more than 30 individual rings, each separated by a "gap" that may have provided access to satellite formation.

Mamajek described that the planet is much larger than Jupiter or Saturn, while its ring system is 200 times the size of the latter's. If you thought Saturn's halos were big enough, think again. The astronomer thought, "You could think of it as kind of a super Saturn."

The planet and its vast ring system was eventually appreciated, thanks to the clues provided by star J1407. Apparently, the configuration was noted to eclipse the Sun-like star in an irregular fashion. This resulted to mysterious dimming.

Specifically, the astronomers were able to observe the eclipse for 56 days, CNN reported. Within this period, some portions were more opaque (indicating denser ring blockage), while some areas were more translucent (indicating blockage of less-dense rings).

As told by the University of Rochester, Mamajek and his team initially proposed that the cause of unusual eclipses was a "moon-forming disk around a young giant planet or brown dwarf." For those who may not know, brown dwarfs are celestial bodies that are too big to be classified as planets, yet too small to be classified as stars.

Utilizing adaptive optics and Doppler spectroscopy, the recent study has concluded that the culprit behind the mysterious light phenomenon is an unseen giant planet with an enormous ring system.

Now off to the big question: In a distant planet surrounded by heavenly halos, is there any room for life?

That may be impossible to answer at this point, given the lack of information about J1407b. But with the current discovery of such ringed systems, the astronomical community is once again closer to unveiling the mysteries of the seemingly-limitless universe.

The researchers encouraged amateur astronomers to keep an eye on star J1407. Observations may be addressed to the American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO).

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