Fried Planet at BD+48 740

     

Fried Planet at BD+48 740

The star BD 48 740 has expanded into a red giant, as the Sun will do near the end of its life.

Astronomers have uncovered evidence that the star is in the process of engulfing one of its own planets.  The star's atmosphere is enriched with the element lithium, a smoking gun indicating that the star may have just consumed a planet.

This artist's illustration shows a gas giant planet spiraling in toward its giant parent star. 

Image Number: WEB13115-2013
Credit: NASA
For print or commercial use, please contact: NASA

Large JPEG (714 x 1276 pixels)