I guess homelessness is everywhere. Will they call at least one of them Yonada?Researchers say galaxy may swarm with 'nomad planets'
Our galaxy may be awash in homeless planets, wandering through space instead of orbiting a star.
In fact, there may be 100,000 times more "nomad planets" in the Milky Way than stars, according to a new study by researchers at the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC), a joint institute of Stanford University and the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.
If observations confirm the estimate, this new class of celestial objects will affect current theories of planet formation and could change our understanding of the origin and abundance of life.
"If any of these nomad planets are big enough to have a thick atmosphere, they could have trapped enough heat for bacterial life to exist," said Louis Strigari, leader of the team that reported the result in a paper submitted to the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. Although nomad planets don't bask in the warmth of a star, they may generate heat through internal radioactive decay and tectonic activity.