Nasa scientists discover three planets which could support ALIEN life

Melba UnderwoodFeb 24, 2017

They're particularly focused on the search for planets in the "habitable zone" of star systems, meaning, in theory, that water could exist on the surface in a liquid form. NASA announced today its discovered seven new Earth-sized planets, at least three of which could potentially support life. Three of these planets lie firmly within the hospitable zone, and could therefore hold liquid water, a substance we believe to be essential for life.

Watch this space for more updates. But stars like TRAPPIST-1 are a lot more common in our galaxy, and that could make planet discovery more frequent.

Scientists aren't the only ones excited about the discovery of seven Earth-size exoplanets around the star TRAPPIST-1.

The findings were also published in the journal Nature.

The scientists observations suggest the inner six exoplanets also have a rocky makeup with icy surfaces and atmospheres, and that a such a tightly-wound configuration is necessary for there to be surface water that could sustain life on these exoplanets.

An exoplanet refers to those planets which orbit around a star other than the Sun.

The star, known as Trappist-1, is a small, dim celestial body in the constellation Aquarius.

Until now, we've mostly just looked for planets revolving around stars like our own.

The three habitable-zone planets are TRAPPIST-1e, 1f, and 1g, and scientists think the middle of them, TRAPPIST-1f, is the most likely to host life, though it's slightly colder than Earth.

"In my opinion this was the most exciting discovery we've had yet with Spitzer in it's nearly 14 years of operation", Carey said.

Demory said that future telescopes, including the James Webb Space Telescope, which is to succeed the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope, "will have the possibility to detect the signature of ozone if this molecule is present in the atmosphere of one of these planets".

The discovery of the seven new extraterrestrial worlds outside of the solar system, however, has caused much excitement to the scientific community NASA even called for a press conference. The planets are pretty close to the star as it only takes as short as one and a half day for the closest planet to orbit the sun (it takes us 365.25 days to revolve around the sun).

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