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Thu Nov 8, 2012, 10:40 PM

Newly discovered 'Super-Earth," only 42 light years away may be habitable

This new exo-planet is one of three just discovered in a solar system already known to have three planets, bringing the total to six.

From Space.com: 'Super-Earth' Alien Planet May Be Habitable

The newfound exoplanet, a so-called "super-Earth" called HD 40307g, is located inside its host star's habitable zone, a just-right range of distances where liquid water may exist on a world's surface. And the planet lies a mere 42 light-years away from Earth, meaning that future telescopes might be able to image it directly, researchers said.

"The longer orbit of the new planet means that its climate and atmosphere may be just right to support life," study co-author Hugh Jones, of the University of Hertfordshire in England, said in a statement. "Just as Goldilocks liked her porridge to be neither too hot nor too cold but just right, this planet or indeed any moons that it has lie in an orbit comparable to Earth, increasing the probability of it being habitable."




This super-earth could conceivably have liquid water and have evolved life.

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Reply Newly discovered 'Super-Earth," only 42 light years away may be habitable (Original post)
LongTomH Nov 2012 OP
Maven Nov 2012 #1
krispos42 Nov 2012 #6
Deep13 Nov 2012 #2
NoOneMan Nov 2012 #3
wrath of medusa Nov 2012 #4
d_r Nov 2012 #5
Confusious Nov 2012 #7
Posteritatis Nov 2012 #8
Confusious Nov 2012 #9
toddmiller Nov 2012 #10

Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Thu Nov 8, 2012, 10:45 PM

1. BREAKING: Mitt Romney announces candidacy for President of Super-Earth

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Response to Maven (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 08:44 AM

6. Retroactively, of course...

n/t

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Thu Nov 8, 2012, 10:47 PM

2. road trip! nt

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Thu Nov 8, 2012, 10:48 PM

3. Really cool!

 

If we get better telescopes, we can look at it while we start going extinct in the next 42 years

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Thu Nov 8, 2012, 11:03 PM

4. By 2015

we should have a decent idea of how common Earth-mass planets are in our galaxy. My guess is that there are a handful of 1Em planets in the habitable zone in the Kepler data.

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Thu Nov 8, 2012, 11:03 PM

5. kolob

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Response to LongTomH (Original post)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:08 AM

7. 7 earth masses though

1 pound would weight 7 there.

I would be around 1400 pounds. My legs would break if I could stand up.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #7)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 10:25 AM

8. It'd actually be a lot less than that

Density and physical size determine surface gravity more than mere mass on those scales. Assuming it's rocky and made of roughly the same stuff as Earth, you'd have a planet with a little under twice the diameter and would be looking at about 1.96 gravities on the surface.

If it was the same diameter as Earth, which it absolutely certainly isn't, then you'd get seven gravities on the surface. If it was half as dense as Earth somehow, the surface gravity would actually be lower than here despite all the extra mass. It can lead to some pretty odd things; Jupiter's over three hundred Earth masses, but its gravity at what people define as its equivalent to "the surface" is only 2.58 g.

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #8)

Sun Nov 11, 2012, 05:55 PM

9. Always forget about square of the distance

When it comes to planet radii.

Oops.

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #8)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 04:15 PM

10. So what about the atmosphere?

Gravity wouldn't just effect how well you can walk. It would also influence the density of the atmosphere. Of course, lots of other things could influence the nature of the atmosphere. A lot of variables operating here.

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