National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

Subaru-Led Team Discovers a Rare Stellar Disk of Quartz Dust

| Science

A research team of Japanese astronomers led by Dr. Hideaki Fujiwara (Subaru Telescope) has discovered a main-sequence star that is surrounded by a rare disk of quartz dust. Collisions of planetesimals, building blocks for planets, may have produced the dusty quartz ring during planet formation around the star. Based on observations with the AKARI and Spitzer infrared space telescopes, this recently discovered, intriguing feature of a stellar system may open new doors for research on the mineralogical nature of extrasolar planetary systems.

Illustration of the HD 15407A System Based on Observations from AKARI and Spitzer. The dusty quartz disk exists around the star.