Scientists have discovered the Sun’s “long-lost brother” which they believe was born of the same cloud of dust and gas as our Sun. Their research, soon to be published in the Astrophysical Journal, notes that the massive cloud that birthed our Sun also created between 1,000 and 10,000 other stars.
The sibling sun, named HD 162826 is 15 percent larger than our Sun. It was discovered in the constellation Hercules 110 light-years away. It may be viewed with the use of low-power binoculars. The astronomers report there is a “small, but not zero” chance that our sun’s long-lost brother might host other planets that contain life.
Astronomer Ivan Ramirez, team leader of the researchers at the University of Texas in Austin, Texas said: “We want to know where we were born. If we can figure out in what part of the galaxy the sun formed, we can constrain conditions on the early solar system. That could help us understand why we are here.”
Specifically referencing the long-lost brother star he added: “Stars that were born in different clusters have different compositions. If a star has the exact same chemical composition as our sun that establishes that they were born in the same place.”
Could our Sun have yet another long-lost brother? Could it have other sibling stars? Ramirez responded: “It is almost certain that if there is another star like this one this close to us, we would have found it already. So the next siblings we find are going to be further away.”
He concluded: “There are a number of surveys that are happening right now that will allow us to learn more about stars beyond the solar neighborhood. Right now there are about 100,000 stars we can look at in this way. In five or 10 years it could be as many as a billion.”