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Super-Earth: Newly discovered exoplanet may be most promising yet in search for signs of life
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NEW DELHI, Apr 20 (Agencies): Earlier, astronomers have discovered a number of nearby exoplanets - or planets outside our solar system - that could harbour life like Proxima b and the seven TRAPPIST-1 planets.

Now, an international team of astronomers has discovered a so-called 'super-Earth' that could contain liquid water, a situation that would make it a very good candidate for harbouring life.

Researchers believe the new exoplanet may be one of the best candidates that may offer the most promising target yet in the search for life beyond the Solar System.

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Named LHS 1140b, the distant planet is orbiting a nearby star - an M class red dwarf star a little smaller and dimmer than the Sun but the most common type of star in our galaxy.

Super-Earth is a rocky, temperate planet orbiting a red dwarf star, Efe news agency reported.

The super-Earth and its parent star are located in the constellation Cetus, the Whale, 39 light years from the Sun, thus - relatively speaking - putting it in our galactic "neighbourhood," according to Felipe Murgas, the coauthor of the study and a researcher with Spain's Canary Islands Institute of Astrophysics.

The study's main author, Jason Dittmann, with the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics, said that this is the "most interesting" exoplanet that he's seen in the last decade.

The new planet was discovered thanks to the MEarth-South telescope network devoted exclusively to seeking out exo-planets.


News Updated at : Thursday, April 20, 2017
 
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