Looking for Earth II


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Searching for planets outside of our solar system is a challenging task, partly because planets do not shine like stars and are harder to see. Their presence can be inferred if they occult a star, causing the star to dim slightly. Measuring the gravitational wobbling of a star can be an indication of another nearby body, possibly a planet.

Thus far, most of the exosolar planets discovered are thought to be large to very large gas giants like Jupiter or Saturn. Astronomers have announced the discovery of two planets that are considered earth-like. They are much closer to size of Earth, are probably rocky (not gas giants), and one of them is thought to have liquid water.

Read more about Closing in on the Next Earth

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