A “Super-earth” Newly Discovered Could Host Life

A planet called Gliese 163c might be placed in the "top" candidates for celestial bodies "new earth," said French astronomers. The planet seems to have many features that would allow, in the opinion of specialists, to host life forms.

A "super-Earth" newly discovered could host life

    New super-Earth – Gliese 163c has a mass of 7 times in May than the Earth – orbiting a star located 50 light-years away from Earth

The planet was discovered by an international team of astronomers, led by Xavier Bonfils of the University “Joseph Fourier” in Grenoble, France.

Xavier Bonfils said that “there is a wide range of structures and compositions that would allow the planet Gliese 163c is a planet habitat”, but we can not say precisely, at present, if the planet is really like Earth structure.

The planet is located on the outskirts of the stellar system Habitats part suitable for the distance to allow for liquid water.

The team studied nearly 400 pities red star, with a High Accuracy Radial Velocity instrument called Planet Searcher (HARPS), a spectrograph that is part of the 3.6 meter diameter telescope at La Silla Observatory in Chile, belonging to the European Southern Observatory, an organization dedicated to research astronomer’s supported by 15 countries.

Gliese 163c is one of the two planets discovered around the star Gliese 163, in the constellation Dora-do. It is believed that around a third star it orbits and the planet, but astronomers have not yet been able to confirm its existence.

Gliese 163c could be a solid planet, but no one knows for sure. Mass planets such characteristics can be either solid – type land – or made ​​up most of the oceans, or gaseous, like Neptune. For now , astronomers can not say precisely whether it is about a type planet Earth.

Gliese 163c has a revolution period of 26 days, and its star is much May less bright than our sun.Other planet found in the system, Gliese 163b has a revolution period of only 9 days.

At Arecibo in Porto Rico, is a laboratory of the University of Porto Rico, Planetary Habitability Laboratory (PHL), which “keep track” of extrasolar planets believed that could host life. In light of recent discoveries, Gliese 163c is ranked 5 on the “candidate list”.

 Where could life exist in the universe?

Of the six planets from the list, four were discovered during ultimately year: Kepler-22b, 667Cc Gliese, Gliese 163c HD 85512b and.

Researchers assessed habitability’s planets – their potential to enable the development of life forms – comparing them with the only planet on which life is uncertain that hosts Terra. They then classify planets taking into account the extent to which mass, diameter and temperature of each match those of Earth.

One of the scenarios for Gliese 163c is that the planet has a warm ocean waters and atmosphere 10 times denser than Earth. However, there is the possibility that temperatures on Gliese 163c is too high to allow the development of life.

Meanwhile, Xavier Bonfils team intends to continue using HARPS, the search for planets habitat, hoping to discover close to Earth on May 1, on which they can learn more easily.

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