“The white dwarf creation process destroys nearby planets, and anything that later gets too close is usually torn apart by the star’s immense gravity.
“We still have many questions about how WD 1856 b arrived at its current location without meeting one of those fates.”
The cosmic puzzle was described in a paper ready for publishing in the journal Nature on September 17.
The planet WD 1856 b was spotted by TESS about 80 light-years away – 470,290,030,000,000 miles away – in the constellation Draco.
NASA’s TESS mission monitors large swathes of the sky for up to a month, observing slight dips in stars’ brightness.