Archive for the ‘ Astronomy ’ Category

Astronomers Find First Earth-like Planet in Habitable Zone

Sometimes good news comes out. It is very fascinating the capability we have to explore the Universe. And if we are very lucky, the challenge to investigate life in a planet at “only” the distance of 20years the speed of light, is approacheable in some ways. By the way, I have to boost up my Astronomy classes (thanks to some podcast by Richard Pogge), as I did just 10-15 of them!!! phot-22a-07-icon.jpg


Astronomers Find First Earth-like Planet in Habitable Zone
The Dwarf Carried Other Worlds Too!

Astronomers have discovered the most Earth-like planet outside our Solar System to date, an exoplanet with a radius only 50% larger than the Earth and capable of having liquid water. Using the ESO 3.6-m telescope, a team of Swiss, French and Portuguese scientists discovered a super-Earth about 5 times the mass of the Earth that orbits a red dwarf, already known to harbour a Neptune-mass planet. The astronomers have also strong evidence for the presence of a third planet with a mass about 8 Earth masses.

This exoplanet – as astronomers call planets around a star other than the Sun – is the smallest ever found up to now [1] and it completes a full orbit in 13 days. It is 14 times closer to its star than the Earth is from the Sun. However, given that its host star, the red dwarf Gliese 581 [2], is smaller and colder than the Sun – and thus less luminous – the planet nevertheless lies in the habitable zone, the region around a star where water could be liquid! The planet’s name is Gliese 581 c.
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