New Universal Discovery - Super Earth Residing Beside Our Earth

James Marshall
November 18, 2018

"It's about seven light-years away, " Guinan said.

This Super-Earth has mass at least 3.2 times that of the Earth, and it completes one revolution around Barnard's star in 233 days.

Its mass exceeds the earth approximately 3.2-fold; the temperature at the surface Barnard" s Star b - approx -170 degrees Celsius: "it makes the planet not a very good candidate to search for extraterrestrial life.

After 20 years of careful academic observation surrounding one of Earth's nearest neighbouring stars, scientists now have reason to believe that there might be what has been described as a "super-Earth" just six light years away from our planet.

In a landmark discovery, an global team of astronomers led by Ignasi Ribas of the Institute of Space Studies of Catalonia (IEEC) and Institute of Space Sciences (IEEC- CSIC) has found a candidate planet orbiting Barnard's star. Data subtle changes - using of existing scientific instruments can be registered with great accuracy.

In the past there has been other efforts to identify a planet which is orbiting the Barnard's star have been but those trial resulted to failures.

Despite relative closeness to Barnard's Star (0.4 times the distance between Earth and the Sun), the exoplanet receives little energy from its faded host: only 2 percent that which the Sun provides our Earth.

This breakthrough, announced in a paper published by the journal Nature, is part of the Red Dots and CARMENES projects, which previously helped uncovered Proxima Centauri.

Exoplanets so small and so far away from their parent star have not been discovered before using the radial velocity technique.

But since Barnard's Star is a red dwarf, a small and cooling star probably about twice as old as the Sun, it produces relatively little light making it hard to discern any bodies in its orbit. It's the closest single star to our own solar system.

Flashback: The exoplanet is the second closest known exoplanet to Earth, CNN reports. "Follow-up observations are already underway at different observatories worldwide". These wobbles affect the light coming from the star.

It might be cold, inhospitable and all but invisible but the new planet has one thing going for it: it's really close.

'Fortunately, our long-running Keck planet search program gave us the years we needed to gather enough precision radial velocity data with HIRES to begin to sense the presence of a planet'.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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