Planets orbiting HR 8799
This movie of four planets more massive than Jupiter orbiting the young star HR 8799 is a composite of sorts, including images taken over seven years at the W.M. Keck observatory in Hawaii.
The movie clearly doesn’t show full orbits, which will take many more years to collect. The closest-in planet circles the star in around 40 years; the furthest takes more than 400 years.
The black circle in the centre of the image is part of the observing and analysing effort to block the blinding light of the star, and thus make the planets visible.Credit:
W.M. Keck observatory, J. Wang, C. Marois