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Archive for the tag “exoplanets”

SETI Detects Alien Signal

Did we just get a greeting from Proxima Centauri? Scientists at the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) confirm they’ve received an unusual alien signal from the Proxima Centauri system, the star closest to our sun.

What makes the discovery so exciting is the location of the solar system, which is home to an exoplanet in its habitable zone, and that it originated from the world’s biggest technosignature investigation project known as Breakthrough Listen, which collaborates with NASA to search for advanced extraterrestrial life. The signals were originally detected in early 2019, but scientist have just recently identified it. Here’s more with YouTuber Anton Petrov.

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More Earth Than Earth

A recent study has scientists tepidly excited about possible habitable planets outside our solar system. Not only has the study honed in on 24 candidates in the universe, but also our future homes that are more habitable than Earth.

We’re talking super-habitable exoplanets equipped with properties that are even better suited for life than Planet Earth. These planets possess just the right conditions for liquid water, better conditions for life to evolve for billions of years and they all orbit just the right kind of star that’s not too active or cold.

The study reveals that when it comes to the type of star that is ideal, our sun is not perfect. Labeled a G-type star, scientists say our sun doesn’t have enough life left in it–only about 5 billion years–not much time by universe standards. And scientists point out that in the next 2 billion years it will reach conditions where life on Earth will not be possible anymore. So the study is gravitating more to K-type stars, which can last for 80 billion years, enough time for life as we know it to evolve.

Because the 24 planets are still labeled as “candidates,” scientists are not entirely sure if they’re out there. Only two have been confirmed, only nine are orbiting a K-type star and 16 are more than a few billions years old, meaning they are well-suited to maintaining the necessary conditions. But only five of these have the all-important temperature conditions.

The big downer in the study is that every one of these planets is too far away–more than 100 light-years (each light-year is 5.88 trillion miles). And the most promising–exoplanet KOI 5715.01–is nearly 3,000  miles away. Here’s more on the study and our potentially future home with Anton Petrov.

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Our Weird Solar System

Since the early 1990s, scientists manned with powerful telescopes have discovered close to 3,500 exoplanets and research suggests that every star has at least one planet.  So it appears that our solar system is not that special. Or are we?

It seems that mysteries abound in our solar system and out of thousands of other systems, none look quite like ours. For starters, the size of planets don’t vary in size in one system. From tiny Mercury to monstrous Jupiter, the planets in our system vary wildly.

In addition, other system have at least one Super Earth–an Earthlike planet with slightly more mass. There is no such object in our solar system. So our solar system has left us with an abundance of mysteries. Fortunately, we are starting to get to the bottom of them thanks to computer simulations. SciShow Space host Reid Reimers helps unravel the mystery.

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The Habitability of Super Earths

When determining the habitability of exoplanets in our universes, scientists have turned their attention to super earths as worlds with the potential to harbor life and civilizations. Super earths, of course, derived their name from their enormous size–up to 10 times the mass of our planet but sharing similar features. “We’re most interested in the earth analogs, ones that have a rocky surface and an atmosphere something like our own planet, just a bit larger,” says author and futurist John Michael Godier. What would those planets be like and how would those differences affect life that might develop on those worlds? Tune in to hear Godier answer those questions.

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From Hell Holes to Frozen Gems

With the advancement of technology, scientists have discovered more than 100 billion exoplanets beyond our solar system. Some are extreme hell holes, while others are frigid snow worlds . V101 Science takes a look at some of these celestial wonders that will blow your mind.

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The Air On Other Planets

Have you ever wondered how we know what the air is like on other planets? “We can study the air on other planets, moons and exoplanets by looking at them. In particular, by looking at light that bounces off or passes through their atmospheres,” says host Henry Reich. He fills in the details in this edition of minutephysics.

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More Signs Of Alien Intelligence

The Kepler Space Telescope’s discovery of what appears to be a megastructure orbiting a distant star has the Internet and science world abuzz. Kepler, whose mission is detecting exoplanets around faraway stars, recently detected a body that was nearly 20 percent larger than anything seen before. Astromers aren’t saying this is proof of intelligent life, but they aren’t ruling out the possibility. Trace Dominguez and Aaron White spell out the ramifications of the discovery in this edition of D News.

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Out Of This World

Gliese 832 c, located 16 light years away in the constellation of Grus, is among the closest most habitable exoplanets to Earth. Though it is two times larger than our planet, Gliese 832 c is also regarded as one of the most Earth-like alien bodies. In this out-of-this-world edition of Hybrid Librarian, check out nine other exoplanets that may one day sustain mankind and life as we know it.

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Anybody Out There?

The one question that has baffled us for millenia is: Are we alone in the universe? With more than 500 trillion suns like ours in the Milky Way Galaxy alone, more than 100 trillion galaxies and the increasing number of exoplanets in the universe, it is nearly impossible to think that there is nobody else. Hybrid Librarian takes a look at this mystery and nine others that have stupefied our greatest minds.

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