A NASA team of scientists discovered a vast, six-mile-wide fraction that scientists call the ExoXposher, the research team announced on Friday. The particles reside in the former solar disk. They were detected by telescopes on Earth and in deep space.
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In addition to the particles, they also supported and legitimized previous theories about the solar cycle. These theories have suggested a sun roughly 2.5 billion years old and one-half billion years older than believed, that suggests the sun’s birth took place in the same direction as the solar wind was derived from particles from the planet’s core and mantle.
“We can’t definitively say how old the solar disk is, or whether it belongs to a wide or narrow solar system — and yet we know the footprint of its debris could be directly observable,” said professor and study co-author Gregory Irach of the Carnegie Institution’s Department of Geosciences in Washington, D.C. “These observations confirm the existence of a very large interstellar object that lies in the solar disk, as well as a second sort of interstellar object located in the galactic center of the Milky Way.”
This exoXposher remained for a fraction of a second after the solar wind created its crystal balls, or chondrites, during the last seven billion years of its existence. The satellites analyzed by NASA’s Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security Regolith Explorer (ASIRIS) and NASA’s Herschel space telescope confirmed the presence of the objects with enhanced spectral data; this sent a signal back to Earth, which confirmed the exoXposher as a kind of exoplanet.
The size and shape of the exoXposher revealed the presence of the planet orbiting it, from which observers have detected the gravitational field of the object as well as other highly amplified cosmic objects.
“We know from previous experiments that gravitational fields in a stellar system can range from 350 to 11,700 miles,” said Erich Stahl, assistant professor of astronomy at Princeton University in New Jersey. “The detection of the exoXposher is likely related to a new technique that can tell us more about how planets are formed.”
The discovery suggests the second kind of exoplanet – those in the nebula called Jovian planets – will undergo a similar assembly and have the potential to host a “third kind of giant planet,” the study found.
More work will be needed to confirm these exoXposhers with visual observations, which are currently limited to superimposing the newly identified objects with Earth’s lunar core and mantle.
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Image: University of California, Irvine (via NASA/ASIRIS)
This article originally appeared on Livescience.com.