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'Super-Earth' most likely candidate for life


Posted on Thursday, 2 August, 2018 | Comment icon 60 comments

Could Kepler 452b be a genuine Earth 2.0 ? Image Credit: NASA
A large Earth-like world has emerged as the most likely place to look for life outside of our solar system.
Known as Kepler 452b, this distant "super-Earth" is situated 1,400 light years away and lies in the middle of its star's habitable zone - the region in which liquid water is able to exist on its surface.

It also happens to lie in what scientists call the "abiogenesis zone" - a region in which the planet is bathed in the correct type and level of ultraviolet radiation from its star to initiate the same types of chemical reactions that were believed to have kick-started life here on Earth.

Out of 4,000 candidate worlds, only 50 lie in the habitable zone and only 1 in the abiogenesis zone.

"This work allows us to narrow down the best places to search for life," said lead scientist Dr Paul Rimmer from Cambridge University's Cavendish Laboratory. "It brings us just a little bit closer to addressing the question of whether we are alone in the universe."

"I'm not sure how contingent life is, but given that we only have one example so far, it makes sense to look for places that are most like us. There's an important distinction between what is necessary and what is sufficient. The building blocks are necessary, but they may not be sufficient: it's possible you could mix them for billions of years and nothing happens."

"But you want to at least look at the places where the necessary things exist."

Source: Evening Standard | Comments (60)

Tags: Extrasolar, Planet

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #51 Posted by lost_shaman on 4 August, 2018, 0:48
For sure. Since I've found all my artifacts in North central Texas these are the names I'm familiar with. Still waiting to find my first Clovis though 
Comment icon #52 Posted by Piney on 4 August, 2018, 1:23
I just found a few flutes around a Carolina bay when I was looking for Younger Dryas impact evidence.
Comment icon #53 Posted by lost_shaman on 4 August, 2018, 1:42
Too cool. I found a dart point or knife that is petrified bone on a campsite near a creek that feeds into the Red River alongside some nifty hand scrapers. I always wonder if it was flaked from petrified bone or if it is so old it became petrified over so much time. If the latter maybe it is pre-clovis? Anyway super cool find. I also have an old dart point made from petrified wood and it's super cool almost completely intact with only a very small tip of a barb missing. 
Comment icon #54 Posted by tmcom on 4 August, 2018, 9:57
There are, but once we get into aliens, then it is brick wall, conversations. It isn't! A case in point is NASA saying that they have found a lake of liquid water at one of Mars polar regions, under 1.5 metres of ice, a few metres deep. This is in an area with minus 200 Dc is common, and no volcanic activity. Which means this briny water should be as hard as steel, but it is liquid. Earths polar oceans have currents and depth to keep it unfroven, although minus 88, is the coldest recorded temp, we have seen. A lake a few metres deep with no currents, or volcanism should be a block of ice. But ... [More]
Comment icon #55 Posted by Jarocal on 4 August, 2018, 15:43
I am far from expert on their specific techniques. I do possess a modicum of knowledge about smacking rocks with blunt objects and using attestable technology contemporary to many of those sites construction as many are still employed today and decades of career experience as a mason lends toward having employed such techniques.
Comment icon #56 Posted by Piney on 4 August, 2018, 15:55
Ahhh, someone finally sobered up and I hesitate to guess there is a speedboat full of partied out co-eds adrift somewhere in the Atlantic... Now, back on topic....... You know how they were built smartass.........
Comment icon #57 Posted by Jarocal on 4 August, 2018, 15:57
Who says I am sober? 
Comment icon #58 Posted by Captain Risky on 4 August, 2018, 20:25
microbial life is boring. Imagine having to look through a microscope and getting excited looking at single cell life that you can’t interact with or learn from. That’s not fun. what I wanna know is what an alien Captain Risky or Astra would be like. Man I would love to hang out with an alien me. 
Comment icon #59 Posted by Astra. on 5 August, 2018, 1:09
Boring ??...oh dear, it's rather mind boggling how some folk think. It would indeed be very exciting news if any tiny living creatures / cells were discovered on Mars or anywhere else in the cosmos for that matter. How you could even say that we wouldn't learn anything from making such an awesome discovery is simply beyond words Risky. Perish the thought...  Nope, I think one of you is probably already enough .. 
Comment icon #60 Posted by Harte on 5 August, 2018, 2:01
Not unlike trying to converse with you. Harte


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