NASA: Six earth-like planets orbiting one star just 37 ly away

How soon can we land on a newly discovered earth-like planet and populate it? At this time, we don’t have a single unclassified spacecraft that can get humans beyond low earth orbit, much less to Mars. By one estimate, traveling the 4.24 light years between Earth and Proxima Centauri, the closest star, would take over 2,700 human generations or 81,000 years, for an unmanned probe. A trip of 37 light years would take about 700,000 years. As far as moving humans, since there have only been 10,000 generations of our species, which is about 200,000 years old, we would be a different species by the time we arrived. Since we are nearly now at the point where we can control our own genetic evolution, it is doubtful that we would much recognize our future star trekking selves.

We only need to figure out the problems of fuel, food, water, radiation protection, protection from micrometeorites, and  others. 

Fortunately, however, Trappist-1 is an ultra cool dwarf, a type of star with a lifespan 1000 times longer than stars like our sun, so it will be around for a while.

Life may have evolved on at least three planets within a newly discovered solar system that is 39 light years from Earth, it was announced last night.

Astronomers at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) have detected no less than seven roughly Earth-sized worlds orbiting a dwarf star in the system, it was announced today.

Scientists had previously only identified a tiny number of so-called “exoplanets”, which are believed to have the qualities needed to support life.  …

The new planets are very close to each other and Dr Gillon said a person standing on the surface of one would have a view of its neighbours, similar to seeing the Moon from Earth.

The first exoplanet was confirmed to have been discovered in 1992, since when a total of 3,577 have been found. Of these, less than a dozen are thought to be well suited to supporting life, and Nasa said only three previously known exoplanets were as ideal as those in the new solar system.

Around a fifth of Sun-like stars are thought to have an Earth-sized planet in their habitable zones. Astronomers estimate there could be as many as 40 billion potentially habitable worlds in our galaxy, the Milky Way. Prof Zurbuchen said that now was a “gold-rush phase” in the search for these exoplanets. 

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Astronomers have spotted a star system with planets that could support life just 39 light years away.

Seven Earth-like planets have been discovered orbiting nearby dwarf star ‘Trappist-1’, and all of them could have water at their surface, one of the key components of life.

Three of the planets have such good conditions, that scientists say life may have already evolved on them.

Researchers claim that they will know whether or not there is life on any of the planets within a decade, and said ‘this is just the beginning.’

No other star system discovered before has been found to have such a large number of Earth-sized planets.

The planets likely have rocky compositions like Earth, are around the same size as our planet, and six have surface temperatures between 0-100°C (32-212°F).

This gives these planets some of the vital atmospheric conditions needed to grow biological life.

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