facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Study finds planets in habitable zone around a distant star

June 25, 2013 at 2:05 PM   |   Comments

GARCHING, Germany, June 25 (UPI) -- European and U.S. astronomers say new data on a well-studied star suggests it has at least six planets, three of them possible candidates for life.

New observations of the star Gliese 667C show three of its planets are super-Earths lying in the zone around the star where liquid water could exist, the European Southern Observatory reported Tuesday from its headquarters in Germany.

"We knew that the star had three planets from previous studies, so we wanted to see whether there were any more," Mikko Tuomi of the University of Hertfordshire in England said. "By adding some new observations and revisiting existing data we were able to confirm these three and confidently reveal several more. Finding three low-mass planets in the star's habitable zone is very exciting!"

This is the first time that three such planets have been spotted orbiting in this zone in the same system, astronomers said.

"The number of potentially habitable planets in our galaxy is much greater if we can expect to find several of them around each low-mass star -- instead of looking at 10 stars to look for a single potentially habitable planet, we now know we can look at just one star and find several of them," study co-author Rory Barnes of the University of Washington said.

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
SpaceX Dragon returns safely from ISS, splashes into Pacfic Ocean SpaceX Dragon returns safely from ISS, splashes into Pacfic Ocean
2
Google exec breaks skydive record with dive from near-space Google exec breaks skydive record with dive from near-space
3
Powerful new microscope sees cell division in real time Powerful new microscope sees cell division in real time
4
Stone tools reveal Ice Age settlement in the Andes Stone tools reveal Ice Age settlement in the Andes
5
Coal-rich Poland wants concessions in EU climate deal Coal-rich Poland wants concessions in EU climate deal
Trending News
Around the Web
x
Feedback