Astronomers have discovered two super-Earths around a star Gilese (Gileese) 887 located about 11 light-years away from our planet. These two exoplanets-in terms of exoplanets in the solar system-are called Gilese 887b and Gilese 887c, respectively, and scientists claim that they can “potentially live”. For those who don’t know, a super-Earth refers to a planet with a mass higher than that of Earth, but much lower than Neptune and Uranus. Astronomers led by Sandra Jeffers of the University of Göttingen in Germany published new research on these exoplanets in the journal Science.
The journal details the new discovery of GJ 887, the brightest red dwarf star orbiting these two super-Earths. This discovery is a huge leap in the search for whether we are alone. Perhaps the most exciting thing about these two new super-Earths is that they are close to the habitable area of red dwarfs, where water can exist in liquid form and may be rocky worlds like Earth and Mars. Scientists pointed out that the atmosphere of these new planets may be thicker than that of the Earth, and may contain life.
Based on their findings, astronomers claim that the orbits of these two exoplanets are short, only 9.3 days and 21.8 days respectively. This shows that the two super-earths are moving much faster than Mercury. Scientists also estimate that the temperature of Gliese 887c is about 70 degrees Celsius.
Jeffers said: “These planets will provide the best possibilities for more detailed research, including the search for life outside of our solar system.”
Even though Gilese 887 is only 11 light years away from us, it is still one of the closest stars to our solar system. It is said to be much darker than the sun, about half of the sun. Scientists claim that this habitable area is closer to Geertz 887 than the distance between the earth and the sun. In addition, it has almost no star points, which makes it possible for newly discovered planets to retain their atmosphere.
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