New 'super-Earth' that is 36 light-years away
“If we are truly, really fortunate, this planet could be a habitat” like Earth, stated Lisa Kaltenegger of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany.
The planet, dubbed HD85512b, circles an orange star fairly smaller and cooler than our sun about 36 light-years absent. The star, HD85512, is visible in the southern sky in the constellation Vela.
The recently located planet circles this star every single fifty nine days, putting it at the edge of the “habitable zone” exactly where h2o could exist if atmospheric circumstances were appropriate.
In a teleconference, Kaltenegger explained that the planet is at the warm edge of its star’s habitable zone, as if “standing up coming to a bonfire.” That means the world would require a whole lot of cloud address — which demonstrates starlight — to keep the surface area cool enough to avert any h2o from boiling, she stated.
Astronomers have not identified whether the new super-Earth is rocky like the Earth or gassy like Jupiter, permit alone no matter whether it has an ambiance. The new super-Earth is 3.5 times the mass of Earth.
Astronomers inferred the existence of the world by watching its star wobble ever before so marginally. The speed of the wobble indicated the existence of a planet tugging at the star.
Sources and more information:
More success in the ongoing hunt for Earth-like planets in other star systems: Astronomers on Monday announced the discovery of 50 new planets circling stars beyond the sun, including one "super-Earth" that is the right distance from its star to possibly have water. "If we are really, really lucky, this planet could be a habitat" like Earth, said...
2011 will be remembered as the year that put exoplanets on everybody's starmaps. Though we'd discovered planets beyond our solar system before, this year astronomers offered more evidence than ever that our universe is packed with exoplanets - some of which might be very like our own rocky, waterlogged world.
( via washingtonpost.com )
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