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Stars

Beta
Pictoris Picture

This Hubble Space Telescope visible-light view of the edge-on disk of dust around the star Beta Pictoris yields telltale evidence for the existence of planets. The "false color" image shows gradations in the brightness of the disk, caused by the fact that the disk shines by reflected starlight, and so the farther the dust is from the central star, the fainter it is. The bright glare of the central star is blocked by a black circle which divides the disk into left (east) and right (west) components.

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Imagine the Universe! is a service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC), Dr. Alan Smale (Director), within the Astrophysics Science Division (ASD) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

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Project Leader: Dr. Barbara Mattson
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This page last updated: Monday, 27-Sep-2004 11:26:11 EDT