First it was thought that the eerie clones were like the sun but now a recent study shows that the Sun has surprisingly different chemical makeup than its peers in the neighbourhood . On the other hand, the peers themselves are almost chemically identical. Maybe it makes sense because the stars and its orbiting planets are made from the same materials, so the exoplanets orbiting those stars should have just slight differences. We may find new stars with solar systems that are almost identical to ours in the future.
Megan Bedell who is an Astronomer of the Flatiron Institute Center for Computational Astrophysics in the New York city, and her team were studying the elements in 79 called the “solar twins”, these are actually the stars that have the same temperature, gravity, and iron content as the sun. This study was aided by HARPS planet-hunting telescope in Chile, so that the star’s spectra, and the rainbow of light emitted with different wavelengths could be measured accurately. The subtle shifts in the light may reveal if the planet is an orbiting planet or not. While the spectra helps Astronomers to find out how many elements the star consists of.
“This dataset is really a treasure trove for abundance analyses,” Bedell reported to the Cool Stars 20 meeting on July 30.
Megan Bedell and her team succeeded in measuring the abundances of 30 elements to a precision of 2 percent which is higher than the achievement the previous study could make. So finally the results have confirmed that some elements that the star is made of also depend on its age. Actually this was already expected by the scientists. The younger stars are more likely to be made of clouds of dust and gas that is polluted by more dense elements as a result of the supernova explosions.
The ratio of some elements that are the fundamental elements in the formation of the planet, for example, carbon to oxygen and magnesium to silicon were mostly similar within the star survey. The way in which the stars and its orbiting planets are the same is actually their chemical makeup as both are made of cloud of dust and gas. The ratio of magnesium to silicon in a planet can determine whether the planet has a rocky crust, if it has plate tectonics and also what kind if minerals it is formed of.
“Past studies have said that there is a lot of diversity from star to star, so there should be a lot of diversity among planets,” Bedell said. “We’re seeing a lot of the same.” This shows how the previous study that claimed that there was a great variety in the chemical composition of stars have failed.
But when it comes to the sun, the team found out that the sun’s composition of elements come in different proportions, for example the sun does not have four of the Earth’s masses.