Universe Guide

T, L, Y Type Stars - Brown Dwarf Star

Brown Dwarf Facts


Brown Dwarf Stars are giant balls of gas, too big to be classed as a gas planet and too small to start nuclear fusion. If Jupiter, the biggest planet in our solar system had bigger mass then it would not be a gas giant but a brown dwarf. Brown Dwarfs will have the Spectral type of T or L. These types of stars are sometimes referred to as failed stars as they have not successfully started nuclear fusion There are no Giant, Supergiant or Hypergiant equivalents.

Brown Dwarves need to gain more mass before they can start nuclear fusion. Quite possibly if the brown dwarf were to gain mass then possibly then they could. Brown Dwarves colliding with one another could possibly create the right conditions where the new brown dwarf has sufficient mass. There's no citation, just thinking out aloud. the milky way and Andromeda Galaxy will billions of years time will merge. Some stellar collissions will happen and a brown dwarf may collide and gain the necessary mass required.

The composition/make-up of a Brown Dwarf is like that of a main sequence star such as our own, the Sun. The dwarf would be made up of hydrogen and possibly other elements but would not start burning because there's not enough gravity to cause the fusion. Space

Unlike other stars, Brown Dwarfs never die. The smaller a star is, the longer it lives for. Small stars are very energy efficient and Brown Dwarves are the most efficient of them all. There is no fusion so no burning takes place. C Seligman

They are larger than gas giants which have also been referred to as failed stars. A Brown Dwarf star is may double digits larger than a gas giant such as Jupiter.

Exoplanets and LIfe

An exoplanet has been discovered in orbit round a Brown Dwarf star. It is unlikely that the planet would have alien life. For a Brown Dwarf, the planet would have to be nearer to its star than Earth is to the Sun. The reason for having to be close is light and heat. The further from the star, the colder and darker it is. The star can be located in the constellation of Sagittarius

Brown Dwarf Discovery

Teide 1, a star in the Pleiades, a star cluster in the constellation of Taurus is the first brown dwarf to have been discovered in the middle of the nineties. Its spectral type is M8 which implies it is a red dwarf, the difference is that it was identified as a brown dwarf after its spectral type was recorded by Hipparcos.

Teide 1 was discovered in 1995 which before then, they were just theory. The star was discovered was detected in optical images of the central region of the Pleiades star cluster. It was confirmed in follow up observatiions at the end of the same year. The paper announcing the discovery was submitted the following year. Research Gate.

They don't produce visible light like the Sun so we don't know that they are there. One way that we do detect and know they are there is by looking for other forms of radiation that is emitted such as infra-red. satellite such as WISE and Spitzer can pick them up. Caltech

Nemesis, the Sun's Evil Twin

There is a theory that our Sun has a companion brown star called nemesis that when it comes close to the Oort Cloud that a comet is sent in our direction and can cause a mass extinctions such as the one that caused the end of the dinosaurs and Prehistoric Animals 65 million years ago. It is only a hypothesis and one that has not been proven.

The Oort Cloud is a mass of comets that surrounds our solar system that is reckoned to be about one light year away from our solar system. Any disturbed object that was sent on its way to Earth would take a long time to get here. As Brown Dwarfs are dark and don't give off much light, it is hard to spot Nemesis, that is if it is out there.

Coldest Stars in the Universe

The current nearest Brown dwarf star so far discovered is WISE J085510.83-071442.5 which is a mere 7.5 light years away, still too far to travel to and back given the speed that our space probes and ships can currently do. The star is one of the coldest stars so far discovered, it temperature can get down as far as minus 54 degrees Fahrenheit. Quora The star is in the constellation of Hydra.

The brown dwarf Gliese 229b was at first thought of being a brown dwarf, N.A.S.A. but has since been reclassified as an exoplanet Simbad.

Names of Example Brown Dwarf Stars

Related Pages of Interest :-

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