25 abril 2007

Gliese 581

Encuentran Primer Planeta Habitable Similar A La Tierra
“…Un grupo de astrónomos acaba de anunciar el descubrimiento del planeta más similar a la Tierra conocido hasta ahora, fuera de nuestro Sistema Solar. Se trata de un exoplaneta que posee tan sólo 5 veces la masa de la Tierra y que podría tener agua líquida en su superficie ya que se encuentra en la zona habitable de su estrella, una enana roja… Usando el telescopio de 3,6 metros de ESO en La Silla (IV Región de Chile), un grupo de astrónomos suizos, franceses y portugueses descubrió una súper Tierra que posee tan sólo 5 veces la masa de nuestro planeta y que orbita alrededor de la enana roja Gliese 581… El exoplaneta recién descubierto es el más pequeño que se haya encontrado hasta ahora fuera de nuestro Sistema Solar. Se encuentra 14 veces más cerca de su estrella que la Tierra del Sol, por lo que tarda sólo 13 días en completar su órbita. La estrella que alberga el nuevo planeta es una enana roja, mucho más pequeña y fría que nuestro Sol. Por eso, pese a estar muy cerca de su estrella, el planeta se encuentra justo en la zona habitable, es decir, la región donde el agua puede permanecer en estado líquido…”

Astronomers find first habitable Earth-like planet
“…An international team of astronomers has announced the discovery of what they are calling “the most Earth-like planet outside our solar system to date.”… This planet has a radius only 50% larger than that of Earth, they say. Its location within the habitable zone of its solar system indicates that any water on its surface may exist in liquid form… A team of Swiss, French and Portuguese scientists discovered this planet – whose mass is about 5 times the mass of the Earth – in orbit around a red dwarf called Gliese 581. This star is among the 100 closest stars to us, located only 20.5 light-years away in the direction of the constellation Libra (“the Scales”). This star is already known to harbor a Neptune-mass planet. The astronomers have also strong evidence for the presence of a third planet with a mass about 8 Earth masses in the Gliese 581 system…”

Distant planet judged possibly habitable
“…In a find­ing that if con­firmed could stand as a land­mark in history, as­tro­no­mers have re­ported dis­co­v­er­ing the most Earth-like plan­et out­side our So­lar Sys­tem to date: a world that may have liq­uid oceans and thus life… Swiss, French and Por­tu­guese sci­en­tists found the body, es­ti­mated as 50 per­cent wid­er than our Earth, or­bit­ing a so-called red dwarf star rel­a­tively close to Earth. The star is thought to har­bor two oth­er plan­ets al­so…”

Gliese 581 C: Chances For Habitability
“…Just what might we find on Gliese 581 c, the potentially habitable planet announced yesterday? Much depends on where the planet formed in its circumstellar system. For that kind of information I listen to Greg Laughlin (University of California at Santa Cruz), whose work on planetary formation via core accretion seems to gain stature with every new planetary find. Here’s Laughlin’s take from his systemic weblog:…”

Swiss Scientist: Search For Life Next
“…Swiss scientist Michel Mayor, who heads the European team that announced the discovery of a new potentially habitable planet, has his sights set on an even bigger target, detecting signs of extraterrestrial life… Mayor predicts that top researchers are less than two decades away from being able to detect real signs of such life _ if it exists… "There's only one thing we can do. We can do science, we can do experiments. We have the methodology, the ability to do this simply on science, so let's do it," the University of Geneva scientist said Wednesday…”

Far-Flung Planet Looks A Lot Like Home
“…A European team of astronomers has discovered what may be the most Earth-like planet outside of our solar system, potentially capable of having liquid water and extraterrestrial life… The planet, Gliese 581 c, named after the red dwarf star Gliese 581 that it orbits every 13 days, is about 20.5 light years away from Earth, the scientists report. Located in the constellation Libra, Gliese 581 is about one-third the mass of the sun and produces sunshine, so to speak, at least 50 times fainter than light emitted from our own star… Because the new planet is much closer to its host star than the Earth is to the sun -- 14 times closer -- the planet may be capable of harboring life…”

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