Earth-sized planet found just outside solar system
Tue., Oct. 16, 2012
WASHINGTON (AP) — Astronomers say that just outside our solar system they’ve found a planet that’s the closest you can get to Earth in location and size.
It is the type of planet they’ve been searching for across the Milky Way galaxy and they found it circling a star right next door — 25 trillion miles away. But the Earth-like planet is so hot its surface may be like molten lava.
The team of European astronomers who found it say it’s likely there are other planets circling the same star. And those planets could fit the not-too-hot, not-too-cold description that astronomers sometimes call the Goldilocks Zone.
The star system is Alpha Centauri B. The research was released online Tuesday in the journal Nature.
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Subscribe now to get breaking news alerts in your email inbox
Get breaking news delivered to your inbox as it happens.