Space & Astronomy
Scientists discover 60 new extrasolar planets
By T.K. Randall
February 14, 2017 · 1 comment
Planets appear to be very common around other stars. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
The significant haul of new worlds includes a potentially habitable 'super-Earth' with a rocky surface.
Based on observations made of 1,600 stars over a 20-year period, the new study has added a further 60 confirmed exoplanets as well as another 54 potential exoplanets to the archives.
One of these, Gliese 411-b, is of particular interest because it is believed to be a terrestrial rocky planet like the Earth and may be a good place to look for signs of extraterrestrial life in the future.
"It is fascinating to think that when we look at the nearest stars, all of them appear to have planets orbiting them," said lead data analyst Dr Mikko Tuomi.
"This is something astronomers were not convinced about, even as little as five years ago."
"These new planets also help us better understand the formation processes of planetary systems and provide interesting targets for future efforts to image the planets directly."
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