View Full Version : Very exciting exoplanet discovery

11-14-2018, 03:12 PM
And the cool thing is that it's frozen and it's close. Sorry, sharpie, but I just had to post this:

Potential super-Earth found nearby after decades-long hunt

Just six light-years away, a frozen world seems to be orbiting a small, dim red star (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-018-0677-y). If it’s truly there, the alien planet would at least partly fulfill a fantasy decades in the making, and it could become one of the most promising targets for astronomers keen on getting to know the many worlds beyond our solar system (https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/space/our-solar-system/).

The newfound candidate planet, described today in the journal Nature, orbits what’s colloquially known as Barnard’s Star, the closest single star to our sun. The bright Alpha Centauri system, which is two light-years closer and hosts a planet of its own (https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/08/earth-mass-planet-proxima-centauri-habitable-space-science/), is actually made up of three stars. By contrast, Barnard’s star is a small red dwarf that’s older than the sun and about a sixth its size. It’s invisible without a decent telescope—the close star wasn’t even discovered until 1916.

Still, Barnard’s Star has long been buttoned into the lore of science fiction, inspiring astronomers to propose the presence of orbiting worlds as far back as the 1960s, and prompting fiction authors to weave tales of adventure around the hidden pinprick of light.

There is much more.


11-14-2018, 05:02 PM
WELCOME! The more the merrier. :)
And Thanks!