Hidden among the seeming endlessness of space, there could be countless worlds that never see the light of day. These mysterious bodies, called rogue planets, are not like other planets, although there could be multitudes of them.
In our own Solar System, Earth and all its planetary siblings orbit around the Sun, bathing in its warmth and light. Rogue planets, on the other hand, are unbound to any star – they simply drift alone through empty space, belonging to nothing except the darkness.
They stray so far from starlight, in fact, they’re very difficult to see at all.
“The Universe could be teeming with rogue planets and we wouldn’t even know it,” says astronomer Scott Gaudi from Ohio State University (OSU).