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donkey_cock_smoothie8 karma

Why have swarms of comets been the default lone explanation over planetary ring systems?

Boyajian et al. makes mention of the enormous rings found around J1407, but dismisses planetary rings as a probable cause due to the lack of symmetry in the dimming events. But would the curves not be highly dependent on the angle/orientation of the ring plane during transit? Additionally, the banding seen in J1407 (or Saturn for that matter) may be characteristic of a "mature" ring system, while younger ring systems may not be as organized.

Could the data potentially be explained by two separate planets with rings formed from moons whose orbits decayed past their Roche limit, accounting for the difference between D800 and D1580?

In my view, this could explain the magnitude of dimming, lark of IR excess during non-transit events, and fits with the age of the system. I'm sure I've missed some analysis that rules this out so thanks in advance for any insight you can provide.

donkey_cock_smoothie1 karma

Ahh I see now. I was under the impression that very large rings around planets could be present, independent of the age of the star. It appears you're saying that such a structure would not persist through to a mature system. That makes sense.

donkey_cock_smoothie1 karma

Thanks for your reply!

I think I was using the term planetary ring incorrectly. I meant to refer to something like Saturn, rather than imply KIC 8462852 has a planetary nebula.

Are planets with large ring structures ruled out by a mature star?