Astronomers have discovered seven new Earth-size planets orbiting a single star 40 light-years away. Part of the TRAPPIST-1 system is located in a habitable zone, which means there could be liquid water and life outside of the planet we call home.
According to NASA’s press release, this “discovery sets a new record for greatest number of habitable-zone planets found around a single star outside our solar system.” The results, which were published in the journal Nature, are just the first step in further observations of the newly-discovered system.
Furthermore, the planets are more than likely rocky and very close to one another. “If a person was standing on one of the planet’s surface, they could gaze up and potentially see geological features or clouds of neighboring worlds, which would sometimes appear larger than the moon in Earth’s sky,” according to the press release. They could also be tidally locked to their star, meaning that each side has a permanent night and a permanent day. Concept art and a virtual-reality video visualization helped illustrate how the planets may look.
Evidence suggests the Milky Way is full of many more Earth-like planets. Other Earth-like planets have previously been discovered and as more observation takes place, the more scientists will know about the solar system and the potential for finding life outside of Earth.
Social Media Reacts to Discovery of Earth-Like Planets
NASA has found 7 new earth like planets that could possibly support human life. The way things are going on earth I'm making reservations
— Angielijka p (@angelijka8) February 22, 2017
*Donald Trump gets elected as President*
NASA: *finds 7 Earth-Like Planets*
— ring rat. (@HEELSlayJ) February 22, 2017
Trump: *defunds science*
NASA: yo we just found 7 earth-like planets
Me: No! FIX THIS ONE!
— Jennifer McAuliffe (@JenniferJokes) February 22, 2017
7 new Earth-like planets that may have water on their surface? Just in time, I'm ready to abandon this planet.
— Matthew Dávila (@SodaPop6548) February 22, 2017
"7 earth-like planets" just discovered orbiting a star 40 light years away. Totally fascinating!
— Jim Cantelon (@jimcantelon) February 22, 2017
7 earth size planets were found each w the possibility of life!!!! The universe is so cool man
— Gummer Slenn (@summer745) February 22, 2017
What are your thoughts on the discovery of the new Earth-like planets? Sound off in the comments section below!
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