7 Earth-Size Planets Orbit Dwarf Star, NASA and European Astronomers Say
Not just one, but seven Earth-size planets that could potentially harbor life have been identified orbiting a tiny star not too far away, offering the first realistic opportunity to search for signs of alien life outside the solar system. The planets orbit a dwarf star named Trappist-1, about 40 light-years, or 235 trillion miles, from Earth.
“The Trappist-1 planets make the search for life in the galaxy imminent,” said Sara Seager, Member (1999–2002) in the School of Natural Sciences and astronomer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “For the first time ever, we don’t have to speculate. We just have to wait and then make very careful observations and see what is in the atmospheres of the Trappist planets.”
Read more at the New York Times.