Have we found the Earth 2.0 yet?

Kepler-62 is home to two habitable zone worlds. The small shining object seen to the right of Kepler-62f is Kepler-62e.

Kepler-62 is home to two habitable zone worlds. The small shining object seen to the right of Kepler-62f is Kepler-62e.

  On the 18th of April the astronomers led by  Mr. Borucki announced the location of the most similar worlds to our planet, in which there could be life without any problem. They are located in the constellation Lyra. This is not big but it is easily identifiable for its star Vega, which is the apex of the “Summer Triangle”.  Another star of this constellation is Kepler-62, which is circle by five planets, Kepler-62b, c, d, e, f, with the size of 1.31, 0.54, 1.95, 1.61 and 1.41 terrestrial radios,  respectively.   Compared  to our  enormous  sphere of hot gas,  the Sun,  this is  smaller and less  bright.

The two Earth-like worlds mentioned before were discovered by the Kepler project, which the NASA started in March 2009. Its aim is to hunt planets observing 150,000 stars in a region of the sky of our galaxy. These are half the size of our planet, and they probably have oceans with humidity and cloudy skies. However, this is an assumption. There is little chance of somebody knowing if life exists or not in them, we can only see it in our dreams.

The diagram compares the planets of the inner solar system to Kepler-62, a five-planet system about 1,200 light-years from Earth.

The diagram compares the planets of the inner solar system to Kepler-62, a five-planet system about 1,200 light-years from Earth.

It is noteworthy that the director of the Kepler project said that one of these planets, specifically the Kepler62f with 267.3 days every year, may be the ideal place for life. The system Kepler 62 is very similar to our solar system, since it also consists two planets in the habitable region, like the Earth and Mars. As it has already been mentioned, these aren’t so big as the Earth. Therefore, they aren’t replicas of this, although the astronomers soon will discover the Earth 2.0. The most important thing is that they are located in the “Goldilocks“ zone, where temperatures are suitable for liquid water, the crucial ingredient for life. Therefore, any aquatic life would be possible. However, Kepler was not designed to tell us where we can go to live, but to study the common characteristics between the Earth and them.

In my opinion, although the Kepler project has been originally created to determine the existence of Earth-like planets in or near the habitable zone only for scientific purposes, it can be very useful. I believe that people are destroying the Earth and finishing the natural resources, so we will soon need a place with similar characteristics. In this case, the Kepler-62f is 1,200 light-years from here, so it is almost science-fiction considering going there, but with this type of projects we may find a nearest one.

 

I took this article from:

Two Promising Places to Live, 1,200 Light-Years From Earth

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/19/science/space/2-new-planets-are-most-earth-like-yet-scientists-say.html?hp&_r=0

The original source is:

Kepler-62: A Five-Planet System with Planets of 1.4 and 1.6 Earth Radii in the Habitable Zone

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2013/04/19/science.1234702.abstract

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Esta entrada foi publicada en Cosmos, astrofísica, planetas. Ligazón permanente.

One Response to Have we found the Earth 2.0 yet?

  1. Very good, and well writen too!. I like the title you’ve chosen.

    >>>> The original source in Science wasn’t hard to find (there were a direct link in de NYT article), and I see you’ve extracted some information from there (planet size with respect to Earth’s radius).
    >> It seems you’ve misunderstood these numbers when you write: ‘As it has already been mentioned, these aren’t so big as the Earth‘. But in the NYT can be read “Kepler 62f is 40 percent bigger than Earth (…) Its mate, known as Kepler 62e, is slightly larger – 60 percent bigger than Earth“. This idea was already include in the title by the authors in Science (‘…with Planets of 1.4 and 1.6 Earth Radii‘)
    >> You have free access to supplementary materials here. As you’re fond of Physics you may be interested on it: methods for detecting planets (transit measured by stellar light flux reduction) and their mass (high-precision Doppler measurements), etc.

    >>>> You should mention the source of the images, specially in this case, as you can link to them in the NASA web site to get additional interesting information. Also to complete with videos like this from the same site.

    >>>> Maybe you or somebody else could explain the meaning of ‘Goldlilocks zone‘ (and the origin of this expression)

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