Say hello to earth 2.0! Historical Kepler discovery suggests that we are not alone. Astronomers have discovered the most Earth-like planet. The discovery was made by the Kepler space telescope.
The planet, Kepler-452b, is one and a half times the size of Earth and orbits within the habitable zone around a star very similar to our sun. Liquid water is found on the surface of the planet, which is 1400 light years from Earth.
If there is also life on the planet, which according to NASA a kind of ‘larger and older cousin “of the earth —is unknown. It’s probably a rocky planet. Earth 2.0 runs in 385 days to its parent star, which has virtually the same temperature and mass as the Sun, but 1.5 billion years older.
Kepler-452b is the twelfth exoplanet resembling the Earth. The Kepler space telescope analyzes the light from stars looking for Earth-like planets. Kepler was launched in March 2009 and has nearly 4,700 possible exoplanets discovered.
Because the newly discovered planet is older than our earth, it is interesting for scientists to investigate further, including in the context of the search for extraterrestrial life. SETI has the planet been examined for signs of life. “We have to look to the Allen Telescope Array to search for artificial signals,” said Seth Shostak SETI boss. “We have not sought at all frequencies, but if there are aliens on Kepler-452b, they keep pretty quiet.”
Finding life on this type of planets is difficult. Future telescopes such as the James Webb Space Telescope is designed to search for signs of habitability, but the planet must be at most a few tens of light years from Earth. Because Kepler-452b is 1400 light years seperated, this exoplanet may not be extensively investigated.
One thing is for sure; the chance that we are alone in this universe is very small. “Kepler-452b brings us a step closer to answering the question of whether we are alone,” said NASA manager John Grunsfeld. Did you like it? Share this article.