A major scientific discovery was announced on Wednesday that involves 1) the possibility of life on other planets besides Earth and 2) keeping an open mind.
NASA has discovered seven entire Earth-sized exoplanets (they’re called that because they’re not in our solar system) orbiting a dwarf star with an ill name: TRAPPIST-1. What’s more, this exoplanet system is pretty close, only roughly 40 light-years away from Earth.
It might surprise you to learn I’m not a scientist, so here’s an explanation via NASA’s press release:
NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope has revealed the first known system of seven Earth-size planets around a single star. Three of these planets are firmly located in the habitable zone, the area around the parent star where a rocky planet is most likely to have liquid water.
The discovery sets a new record for greatest number of habitable-zone planets found around a single star outside our solar system. All of these seven planets could have liquid water—key to life as we know it—under the right atmospheric conditions, but the chances are highest with the three in the habitable zone.
Think about it...
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Again, I’m not a scientist, but I know science and I think this reestablishes the fact that aliens are real***. It won’t be long before they arrive.
There are lots of fascinating facts about this exoplanet system, the discovery of which was published in the journal Nature. The exoplanets are all described as likely “rocky” and, according to NASA, the farthest one “could be an icy, ‘snowball-like’ world.” Nothing sounds more fun. Also:
All seven of the TRAPPIST-1 planetary orbits are closer to their host star than Mercury is to our sun. The planets also are very close to each other. If a person was standing on one of the planet’s surface, they could gaze up and potentially see geological features or clouds of neighboring worlds, which would sometimes appear larger than the moon in Earth’s sky.
Most important, maybe our future descendants can take up residence on one of these exoplanets once we complete our mission of successfully depleting all of Earth’s resources.
***This statement feels true.