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Saturday, January 20, 2018

Astronomers have discovered a potentially habitable super-earths


Studying the planet K2-18b, located in the constellation Leo at a distance of 111 light years from the Sun, scientists have found that it represents “an enlarged copy of the Earth.” It also appeared that she, in all probability, has suitable conditions for life similar to earth. Finally, experts have discovered that this cosmic body is not the only planet orbiting a red dwarf K2-18.


photo: pixabay.com

K2-18b was opened in 2015, but until now it was known not too much. However, scientists already knew that she is in the so-called “habitable zone” of its star, i.e., at this distance from the star where water can exist in the liquid state, not freezing and not evaporating. It is believed that life in the form in which we know it may have begun with the observance of this condition. However, experts were unsure whether similar to the Earth planet itself at least in part.

An international group of researchers under the leadership of Ryan clothe from the canadian Center for planetary science, Scarborough was able to calculate the approximate mass of the K2-18b, which was 6-10 times greater than the Earth. Comparing the mass and radius, the experts tried to answer the question, like whether the planet is on the increased Land (that is, consists primarily of bare rock), or a large part of its mass is in the gas shell. As it turned out, closer to the truth the first option — K2-18b may be any rocky body like our planet, or a planet ocean, which is covered with ice.

Also in the course of studying K2-18b experts have observed another planet orbiting the same star.

At the moment the study was not published in a peer-reviewed scientific publication, however, can be found in the digital library of preprints at Cornell University ArXiv.org.

It should be noted that many specialists have very low chances of the planets close to red dwarfs to be inhabited. The fact that the surface of such luminaries often have a powerful flash, which planet gets too powerful charges of ultraviolet and other radiation. Yellow dwarfs, like our Sun, are much more “quiet” stars. However, some experts believe that under certain conditions, such ploughing can imagine not too big a problem.

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