Astronomers Spot Oldest Known Star

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Astronomers from an international consortium have unveiled a momentous discovery—the identification of the oldest star ever recorded in the universe. This celestial giant, named Kepler-444, surpasses the age of our solar system by more than twofold. In addition to this epoch-making finding, Kepler-444 hosts a system of five planets with dimensions comparable to Mercury and Venus. However, their proximity to the star positions them in an inhospitable zone, precluding the possibility of habitability.

Detailed in the Astrophysical Journal, the researchers propose that Kepler-444's solar system originated around 11.2 billion years ago, placing its formation in the early stages of the universe, which began 13.8 billion years ago. This stands in stark contrast to our solar system's relatively youthful age of approximately 4.5 billion years.

The groundbreaking discovery was facilitated by NASA's Kepler planet-hunting spacecraft, which meticulously observed the star over a four-year period. Located in the Lyre constellation, Kepler-444 was a collaborative effort involving astronomers from Europe, Australia, and the United States.


1- What distinguishes Kepler-444 from our solar system in terms of age?

2- According to the researchers, where does Kepler-444's solar system's formation place it in the timeline of the universe?

3- What organization facilitated the discovery of Kepler-444?


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Parts of this lesson are based on: An article Engoo Daily News..