As I’m currently being torn hither and thither, I’m constantly finding myself in more and more strange and remote places.
Yesterday, for example, I found myself many many miles from home, about 420 light-years away actually, in a local (but still miles away) star system. Known as Auriga on Earth, I’m sure any residents of this far flung constellation will have their own name for it. From there, Betelgeuse (from the neighbouring Orion constellation) is clearly visible, as are Pollux and Castor (from Gemini).
But Auriga has something that caught my attention within minutes of me arriving there.
There’s a bright white/yellow dwarf star in the region, which is known as Kelt-2A on Earth… and it has a planet orbiting it. And not just any planet. It’s a Jupiter-sized one.
The official Earth name for the planet is Kelt-2Ab, where it is considered to be a failed star. It’s hydrogen rich, with an osmium-type density to it. And apparently, with no life.
I needed to get a closer look at it. I have a couple of nifty apps on my mobile phone – a powerful telescope app and a handy heat sensor app – which come in very useful at times like this. The sun is very bright, so I wasn’t expecting to make anything out on the surface of Kelt-2Ab, but how wrong was I.
Dense forests appear to cover large areas of the surface, which, at first glance, appears to be excruciatingly hot. But it’s what was within the forests that caught my attention, after I’d zoomed in to the maximum setting.
A pack of white wolves padded around the vegetation and rocks, stopping occasionally to howl and do other-wolfy stuff.
These wolves are clearly adapted to their searing-hot environment, even though they appear to be covered in a thick white fur. And the heat-sensor app shows that they manage to keep most of their bodies cool (this image shows a lot of green, which indicates ‘normal’ temperatures… blue is cold, red is hot).
Could these be the legendary Firewolves of Io? Or distant relatives to them? The Jupiter link is clearly there… or maybe I’m looking a little too deeply into this and making 2 plus 2 equal 5.
But, my search continues (unless I’m torn further hither and thither, that is!)
To be continued…
(Based on characters / legends / mythology created by Icewolf)