Researchers Discover Two 'Super Earths' Just 12 Light Years Away

TRAPPIST 2.0? Scientists discover four Earth-sized planets orbiting Sun-like star!

TRAPPIST 2.0? Scientists discover four Earth-sized planets orbiting Sun-like star!

"We can [now] disentangle the noise due to stellar surface activity from the very tiny signals generated by the gravitational tugs from Earth-sized orbiting planets", said UC Santa Cruz Professor and co-author Steven Vogt.

A team of researchers in the United Kingdom have found two possibly habitable Earth-like planets orbiting a sun-like star.

Within this zone the temperature is not too hot or not too cold, just comfortable for the existence of surface waters.

As far as habitability goes, the researchers themselves point out another problem: due to the massive debris disk surrounding tau Ceti, the outer two planets are likely subject to intense bombardment via comets and asteroids, which would pose obvious issues for life.

The team hopes to refine the techniques to find wobbles as small as 10 cm (4 inches) per second, small enough to detect Earth-sized planets.

Tau Ceti, like the sun, is surrounded by a "habitable zone" where conditions are favourable for Earth-like life.

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The proximity of the planets and their similarity to Earth mean that they could eventually be a home for humans, according to the astronomers behind the research.

Smaller planets require extra precision since the wobble is smaller and they can be harder to spot.

They dubbed two of the four planets "super-Earths", so-called because they have masses of around 1.7 Earth mass, larger than Earth but among the smallest planets ever detected around the nearest sun-like stars. Numerous other "potentially habitable" exoplanets discovered to date orbit dim red dwarf stars, which, for a variety of reasons, could prove hostile to life.

"Our detection of such weak wobbles is a milestone in the search for Earth analogs and the understanding of the Earth's habitability through comparison with these", said Feng. The earth located halfway between the middle of the zone, fit for life, and her domestic turn.

However, the researchers say the improved sensitivity of their observation techniques using the ESO's HARPS spectrograph and the Keck-HIRES in Hawaii is allowing them to better their chances of finding planets that will be habitable. Their findings are to be published in the Astronomical Journal.

After one of NASA's biggest revelations about a whole new solar system consisting of seven Earth-like exoplanets orbiting a single star - TRAPPIST-1 - scientists have once again discovered a similar existence.

It is now known that two signals of Tau Ceti previously identified in 2013, you do not have a planetary origin.

"We realized that we could see how the star's activity differed at different wavelengths and used that information to separate this activity from signals of planets", said Dr Mike Tuomi who led the previous study, in a statement.

Although the two outer planets may have liquid water, another obstacle stands in the way of extraterrestrial life.

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