Kronos: de­stroyer of worlds

Sky at Night Magazine - - BULLETIN -

A metal-rich star could have en­gulfed 15 Earth’s worth of rocky plan­ets A star may have de­voured more than a dozen plan­ets, ac­cord­ing to the lat­est in­ter­pre­ta­tions of its strange chem­istry. The star, named Kronos af­ter the child eat­ing Ti­tan of Greek mythol­ogy, is part of a bi­nary pair with an­other star named Krios. Nor­mally you would ex­pect these stars to be twins, but Kronos is par­tic­u­larly rich in rock-form­ing el­e­ments such as alu­minium, sil­i­con and iron when com­pared with Krios. How­ever, vo­latile el­e­ments which are com­monly found as a gas, like oxy­gen and car­bon, are not as abun­dant as you would ex­pect if the cause of the dif­fer­ence stemmed from the star’s age or ori­gin.

“All of the el­e­ments that would make up a rocky planet are ex­actly the el­e­ments that are en­hanced on Kronos … so that pro­vides a strong ar­gu­ment for a planet en­gulf­ment sce­nario,” says Se­myeong Oh from Prince­ton Univer­sity, who led the study. www. prince­ton.edu

We can only imag­ine what the worlds Kronos con­sumed might have looked like

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