One global astronomers’ crew has discovered a super-earth exoplanet settled on the constellation of Leo. Even though right now it’s not exactly like our Planet, scientists claim it has the potential to sustain life.
Leaning on the constellation Leo in K2-18, a red dwarf star system roughly 111 light-years away, just a while ago, scientists have found an exoplanet. They named it super earth.
The researchers discovered the exoplanet with the help of the ESO’s High Accuracy Radial Velocity Planet Searcher (HARPS). The searcher was pitched upon this planet during the investigation process of another exoplanet (K2-18b).
The discoveries of the team of astronomers will be available for the public in the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics.
The team had strong support from the Natural Sciences and Research Council of Canada and the Institute for Research on Exoplanet.
They established the super-earth has a mass of 7.5 ± 1.3 Earth masses and an orbital period of 9 days. Its semi-major axis was around 2.4 times smaller from the other exoplanet’s they were examining – K2-18b.
The team didn’t spot the planet before together with K2-18b because the two exoplanets do not lie on the same orbital plane.
The possible existence of alien life
The more Earth-like exoplanets we discover, the more unavoidable becomes the subject of possible alien life. Alongside with that subject comes the question of what does the alien life look like if it’s real?
Our knowledge of life and its incentives to withstand are getting more complex every single day.
The super earth, currently, it doesn’t lie on what we consider a livable area. However, the possibility it could hold life still exists.
Ryan Cloutier, the leader of the research said: “With the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) we can probe the atmosphere and see whether it has an extensive atmosphere or it’s a planet covered in water.”
The more we study the recently discovered exoplanets, the more we expand our understanding of life. This might help us achieve the answer we want to know: whether there is alien life and how does it actually look like.