Feb 21, 2019 | Updated: 08:27 AM EST

Super-Earth Exoplanet Best Candidate In Search For Signs Of Life

Apr 22, 2017 04:53 AM EDT


A super-Earth was discovered by astronomers from nearby exoplanets. Currently, it's the best candidate in the search for signs of life.

Phys.org reported that the super-Earth was discovered in the habitable zone and was found out to have the best possible signs of life in the universe. Super-Earth originated in the constellation of Cetus or The Sea Monster, rounding the faint red dwarf star.

The super-Earth LHS 1140b, when compared to Earth and Sun, is closer to its star which is the Red dwarf. Red dwarfs, on the other hand, are much cooler, dimmer and smaller than the Earth's Sun. However, the closeness of super-Earth exoplanet to its star does not indicate the great amount of sunlight, but only half of it.

Furthermore, ZeeNews reported that the super-Earth exoplanet could possibly contain liquid water making it perfect for any signs of life. Its surface is rocky but can be possible for any species to survive.

Lead author Jason Dittmann from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics said that it's the most exciting exoplanet he has seen over the past decade. "We could hardly hope for a better target to perform one of the biggest quests in science which is searching for evidence of life beyond Earth."

With the use of the MEarth-South telescope, the super-Earth exoplanet was discovered as well as its diameter was measured. Likewise, its mass, orbital period and mass was calculated through the use of the HARPS spectrograph at the LaSilla ESO Observatory in Chile.

With the use of both instruments for the super-Earth exoplanet, Nicola Astudillo-Defru from Geneva Observatory in Switzerland was able to generalize the conditions of the super-Earth. "The present conditions of the red dwarf are particularly favorable for the super-Earth exoplanet making it spins more slowly and allowing it to emit less high-energy radiation compared to other similar low-mass star," Defru said.

With all of the existing conditions such as the liquid surface water in the atmosphere, the rocky surface, and the less radiation, the super-Earth exoplanet has the possibility of life signs. This makes the super-Earth exoplanet as the best candidate yet for future observations and further explorations to study any signs of life beyond the solar system.

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