Astronomers locate planet that may have a life supporting atmosphere

Astronomers have located a planet that is showing signs of a life-supporting atmosphere, as it's in the orbital sweet spot.

@JakConnorTT
Published Fri, Aug 6 2021 3:35 AM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Sep 7 2021 10:47 PM CDT

Astronomers believe they have located a planet that is showing promising signs of having an atmosphere that can support life.

Astronomers locate planet that may have a life supporting atmosphere 02 | TweakTown.com
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A new study published in the Astronomy & Astrophysics journal has honed in on a planetary system dubbed L 98-59 after the star it orbits. The system contains a rocky planet that has half the mass of Venus and is believed to be an ocean world. The team of astronomers used the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope in Chile, and found evidence of a fifth planet in what is called the "habitable zone" of its local star.

The "habitable zone" is a location in space that is not too hot and not too cold to host life. While the results from the study are definitely significant, astronomers don't have the telescope resolution to be able to detect biosignatures on the planet, even though it's only 35 light-years away, which is quite a small distance when discussing distances in space.

The study states, "These results represent an important achievement in the quest for life outside the solar system. However, it is important to keep pushing toward smaller masses and longer periods to ensure our capacity to measure the mass of a transiting Earth analog in the habitable zone of a bright host star."

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science and space news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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