NASA Discovers New Possible Habitable Planet


A team of scientist were reanalyzing data from NASA’S kepler space telescope and discovered an earth-sized planet orbiting in its star’s “habitable zone”. This is the area around a star where a rocky planet could support liquid water. This new planet has been called Kepler-1649c and is about 300 light years from earth. Kepler-1649c is planet most similar to Earth out of all the exoplanets discovered in the Kepler project because of its size and temperature. It is only 1.06 times larger than earth and receives 75% of starlight from its host star compared to earth. Thus far, Kepler-1649c is the closest overall planet to earth.

There are still many unknowns about this planet, such as the atmosphere and the type of star it orbits. Kepler-1649c orbits around a red dwarf, which is a type of star known for it flare ups which might make it more difficult for life on this planet. Without knowing the atmosphere of this planet, scientists are also unable to know if this planet can hold potential life.

Associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington, Thomas Zurbuchen, says “This intriguing, distant world gives us even greater hope that a second Earth lies among the stars, waiting to be found…”. This new discovery of a planet so similar to earth means we are just one step closer to finding possible life forms somewhere in our universe.