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Jan 10, 2013

Super Earth : Astronomers Discover a Alien Planet

LONG BEACH, Calif. — Just over a week after astronomers boldly announced that they would discover an Earth twin elsewhere in the universe within the year, NASA's Kepler telescope spotted a pretty good candidate. Unglamorously named KOI 172.02 -- KOI stands for Kepler Object of Interest -- this planet is the most Earth-like planet astronomers have discovered yet.


With a radius that is just 1.5 times that of Earth, the potential planet is what a so-called "super-Earth," meaning it is just slightly larger than the Earth. The candidate planet orbits a star similar to the sun at a distance that falls within the "habitable zone" — the region where liquid water could exist on the planet's surface. Scientists say the planet, if confirmed, could be a prime candidate to host alien life.

"This was very exciting because it's our fist habitable-zone super Earth around a sun-type star," astronomer Natalie Batalha, a Kepler co-investigator at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., said Tuesday (Jan. 8) here at the 221st meeting of the American Astronomical Society.

The find could be the closest so far to an Earth twin beyond the solar system, she said. The object's host star is a G-type star just slightly cooler than our own sun.

"It's orbiting a star that’s very much like our sun," Batalha added. "Previously the ones we saw were orbiting other types of stars."

The object takes 242 days to orbit its star (compared to Earth's 365 days) and is about three-quarters of the Earth-sun distance from its parent. The Earth orbits 93 million miles (150 million kilometers) from the sun on average, a distance known as 1 astronomical unit.

"It's a big deal," astrophysicist Mario Livio, of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, told SPACE.com. "It's definitely a good candidate for life."

Based on its characteristics, the possible planet may or may not be rocky, but it certainly has the possibility of liquid water.

The possible planet is called KOI 172.02 (KOI stands for Kepler Object of Interest, a designation assigned to all planet candidates found by the telescope until they are confirmed as planets). The discovery was announced at the meeting Monday (Jan. 7) by Christopher Burke of the SETI Institute as part of a batch of 461 new planet candidates found by Kepler.

Kepler launched in 2009 and was recently granted an extended mission until at least 2016. The telescope has detected 2,740 candidate planets thus far. While just 105 of them have been confirmed to date, Kepler scientists estimate that more than 90 percent will end up being the real deal.

"There is no better way to kick off the start of the Kepler extended mission than to discover more possible outposts on the frontier of potentially life-bearing worlds," Burke said in a statement.

16 comments:

  1. Here we go....

    This is becoming so routine it's getting scary. In my lifetime first they discover that other stars have planets, then they discover just how many planets are out there then they say there could be "Earth like" planets out there then just a few weeks ago they state there could be millions of possible "Earth Like" planets and now this.

    As I stated last week when I posted another related topic thread something seems to be up...

    Thoughts?

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    1. My thoughts? I am taking this into a new direction.

      After many more "discoveries" and articles from these scientists...
      A perceived threat will come from the skies in the form of "extra-terrestrials".
      Just like the plan I read about years ago...

      It will be the largest threat to ever hit modern civilization.
      Global chaos will ensue.
      But will it be real?

      What will happen, you ask?
      Everything from nationwide riots, to modern warfare.
      The television will be it's greatest ally.
      Striking fear into households daily.
      Fear drives this nation to consume.
      It will also drive it to accept whats coming.

      More control.

      (You wanted my thoughts. That's exactly what came to mind)

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    2. I agree, even the Vatican has been showing interest in discovering life outside of our planet. Which would essentially contradict their teachings. Not to say all their teachings would be bogus, just certain aspects of it.

      ***Religious folk and Atheists..Please don't turn this into a pissing contest, it's merely an opinion/observation.***

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    3. The only info we know is what they tell us THEY could be tellin us anything, Your right something is up!!

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  2. This is just amazing, I wonder how long it will be before they say that LIFE exists on one
    of these planets, this year maybe, if not, then I think soon.

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    1. That's outrageous!They do seem to be finding more and more earth-like planets.
      Hopefully we will one day have the technological ability to get there.I'm not talking about our rockets either but something more advanced.

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    2. http://www.ufo-blogger.com/2010/05/us-intelligence-agencies-alien.html

      It seems there is life on several!

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  3. It seems to be a slow moving disclosure happening all at once these days. I've always believe life exist elsewhere in our Universe and it just unimaginable what it would be like to actually visit the planet and see what kind of creatures, maybe even intelligent beings on said planets. It makes me feel all giddy just thinking about it, and it's things like that that makes life beautiful.

    I hope we get to meet or see another intelligent being in our lifetime, I would truly be thankful for it.

    On the the side note; one would have to imagine how many civilizations out there that are far more advance than us with the capabilities to be able to travel to other planets. If you imagine that, you might as well imagine that they as well are finding many many other planets that they are calling 'Earth-like" planets, well not 'Earth' by their definition but the same meaning and you would have to imagine that's why they haven't came here to Earth to visit us yet because they have so many options to choose from regarding which planets to visit.

    Who's to say they aren't here already? Millions of UFO sightings have been reported World wide, and millions even believe in the possibility of extra-terrestrials. I know I do.

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  4. This is fascinating news alright. It's one thing believing that we are only one of many similar planets capable of and conducive to supporting similar life forms to Earth, but it is really another to actually confirm that one may have been discovered.
    I agree that within our lifetime such monumental advances in human knowledge of our cosmos have occurred and seem to be gathering pace at a mind blowing rate.

    Who knows maybe it is part of a plan to ease the population into acceptance of disclosure of other similar life-forms or maybe despite other planets being capable of supporting life as we know it they could be deserted and could possibly be a destination for humanity when our technology allows it.

    When we are finished destroying our home and make it so polluted that it can no longer sustain us maybe the human plague (sorry race) can move on and trash somewhere else.

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  5. Disclosure will happen this year I am absolutly certain of it and have been for quite some time.

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  6. I also believe that a lot of these discoveries are in some respect smoke and mirrors to distract from what may be happening on Mars, the moon and possibly other planets.

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  7. These planets are so far. That in our life time and generations of lifetimes we will never reach these places. The possibilities of other life forms reaching us? Maybe there life span is different.

    Imagine if other life forms avreage life span is a 1000 years? Perhaps there is so many planets that support life and maybe we are not as significant as we think we are.

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  8. I believe its not the life spans that affects us from travel, its technology that limts us to travel the outter limits at this point of time ....

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  9. I believe that the US government is obviously hiding something and is trying to make us become astonished in order for when there ready say that they charge so much to leave this planet nd go to the one they choose i believe its all about the money....

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  10. I find 2 things about this report Fishy. One is that no matter which site you ready it on, it's the exact same story, word for word. Usually the story is a little different and some sites have more info than others.

    Secondly, on every other report of an "Exo-Planet Discovery" they ALWAYS say how many light years from Earth the Exo-Planet is. In this report there is no word of how far away it is.

    Other than that I'm happy to see this ifnfo coming out.

    Rick

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  11. I never knew that we found a planet that is so similar to ours until i read this blog. I am so happy that i found this blog so now i can do more research on this planet! i'm wondering though how are we going to gain more knowledge about this planet and determine furthermore if it could possibly be sustainable for life? Are astronomers now doing more research on this planet? I'm fascinated and this is a really big deal. I would like to know more information about this planet that is so much like our own.

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