Earth-like Exo Planet 

#GS3 #Science&Technology 

Astronomers may have discovered an Earth-like exoplanet orbiting a Sun-like star, a little over 3,000 light-years away. 

The planet named 'Planet KOI-456.04', the unconfirmed exoplanet is thought to be similar to Earth for several reasons. 

Background 

  • It is said to have a similar distance between its sun - Kepler-160 - with an orbit that takes it 378 days to complete. 
  • It also thought to receive 93 percent as much light as Earth gets from the Sun. 
  • That when combined with the fact Kepler-160 is thought to be very similar to our own sun in terms of mass and radius, leads scientists to believe they may have found an Earth-like planet in the solar vicinity that has the potential to sustain life. 

Highlights 

  • Most exoplanet discoveries thus far have been around red dwarf stars, which for several reasons would be improbable hosts to habitable planets, including the fact they can emit high-energy flares and radiation that would make it difficult for life to survive. 
  • According to a research paper published in Astronomy and Astrophysics journal last week, Planet KOI-456.04 appears to be the fourth planet orbiting the Kepler-160 star. 
  • Planet KOI-456.04 was discovered after examining old data collected by NASA’s exoplanet-finding Kepler mission with new algorithms to study the star's (Kepler-160) brightness, a study led by researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS), along with researchers from University of California Santa Cruz as well as NASA. 
  • KOI-456.04 is said to be the fourth planet orbiting Kepler-160, with the third called Kepler-160d. 
  • It was confirmed indirectly by the same study, as it was not seen to transit the light curve of the star. 
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