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NASA's Kepler Confirms its First Planet in Habitable Zone of Sun-like Star

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posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 05:40 PM
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had this ready to go..



Planet found orbiting habitable zone of sun-like star

By Irene Klotz
MOFFET FIELD, California | Tue Dec 6, 2011 6:10am EST

MOFFET FIELD, California (Reuters) - The most Earth-like planet ever discovered is circling a star 600 light years away, a key finding in an ongoing quest to learn if life exists beyond Earth, scientists said on Monday.
The planet, called Kepler-22b, joins a list of more than 500 planets found to orbit stars beyond our solar system. It is the smallest and the best positioned to have liquid water on its surface -- among the ingredients necessary for life on Earth.
"We are homing in on the true Earth-sized, habitable planets," said San Jose State University astronomer Natalie Batalha, deputy science team lead for NASA's Kepler Space Telescope that discovered the star.
The telescope, which was launched three years ago, is staring at about 150,000 stars in the constellations Cygnus and Lyra, looking for faint and periodic dimming as any circling planets pass by, relative to Kepler's line of sight.
Results will be extrapolated to determine the percentage of stars in the Milky Way galaxy that harbour potentially habitable, Earth-size planets.
This is the first detection of a potentially habitable world orbiting a Sun-like star, scientists reported in findings to be published in The Astrophysical Journal.
Kepler-22b is 600 light years away. A light year is the distance light travels in a year, about 6 trillion miles (10 trillion km).
GROUND TELESCOPES
Planets about the same distance from their parent stars as Earth take roughly a year to complete an orbit. Scientists want to see at least three transits to be able to rule out other explanations for fluctuations in a star's light, such as small companion stars. Results also are verified by ground and other space telescopes.
Kepler-22b, which is about 2.4 times the radius of Earth, sits squarely in its star's so-called "habitable zone," the region where liquid water could exist on the surface. Follow-up studies are under way to determine if the planet is solid, like Earth, or more gaseous like Neptune.
"We don't know anything about the planets between Earth-size and Neptune-size because in our solar system we have no examples of such planets. We don't know what fraction are going to be rocky, what fraction are going to be water worlds, what fraction are ice worlds. We have no idea until we measure one and see," Batalha said at a news conference at NASA Ames Research Center in Moffet Field, California.
If Kepler-22b has a surface and a cushion of atmosphere similar to Earth's, it would be about 72 degrees Fahrenheit (22 C), about the same as a spring day in Earth's temperate zone.
Among the 2,326 candidate planets found by the Kepler team, 10 are roughly Earth-size and reside in their host stars' habitable zones.
Another team of privately funded astronomers is scanning the target stars for non-naturally occurring radio signals, part of a project known as SETI, or the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence.
"As soon as we find a different, a separate, an independent example of life somewhere else, we're going to know that it's ubiquitous throughout the universe," said astronomer Jill Tarter, director of the SETI Institute in Mountain View.
The Kepler team is meeting for its first science conference this week.
(Additional reporting by Debby Zabarenko in Washington; Editing by Jane Sutton and Philip Barbara)
Link: www.reuters.com...

Video

www.reuters.com...





posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 05:42 PM
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reply to post by Jepic
 


"where liquid water COULD exist" ..."don't know its predominate composition"

Well sounds like a good reason to keep their mouths shut until they figure out what the dang thing is made of.

Thanks NASA for one big waste of breath. Save your news reports for things important.

"Could be" "maybe" "possibly" "might be"

Blah blah blah.



posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 05:47 PM
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reply to post by daynight42
 


First planet in habitable zone detected circling a sun-like star, and that's all you have to say?

That's funny!



posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 08:21 PM
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reply to post by Jepic
 

NASA has wasted a lot of money trying to proved that there is "life out there".



posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 09:36 PM
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If there are intelligent life forms there, we should use S.E.T.I to warn them about bankers!
Amirite????



posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 09:46 PM
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Neat. But with that kind of info, and applying it to our own solar system, you get 1 out of 3 odds for a planet with life. Given that we don't know the composition of what we're looking at, the odds are likely much smaller. At least it means it's possible to find somewhat decent candidate planets based on the anthropomorphic criteria regarding our own existance.

Now if only they have a way to do some spectrographic analysis of the atmospheres of distant extrasolar planets when they pass their respective stars... When they find one that has a high abundance of free oxygen, that should get some attention. (Such news would have mine.) It would indicate the presence of photosynthesis at least. Thus we'd know there's other life. Still wouldn't know to what level, but at least there would be something there. Such planet would deserve a lot more attention in future observations.

Thus if anyone else is out there, they wouldn't need to be that much more technologically advanced than ourselves to know that something is living on Earth if they can detect the planet itself. Also keep in mind, SETI signals or not, it would be a candidate for exploration if reasonable means of interstellar travel were available. (Honestly, the "shut up and be quiet" proposition for staying safe from any advanced aliens by the likes of Hawking wouldn't be worth much.) If you'd consider yourself a true scientist, you'd want to learn what's living on a planet with life regardless if it's at your level or not.
edit on 6-12-2011 by pauljs75 because: spelling, minor edit.



posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 10:15 PM
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Originally posted by Xeven

Originally posted by SuchIsLife
I am just glad that we do not yet have the technology or capabilities to go there and either rape/exploit the planet of its natural resources, or for the elite to use it as a holiday destination or escape rock for when TSHTF.

I may also be wrong here, but is it not possible for a life supporting planet to exist outside of the "habitable zone". i.e A planet with internal warmth - life may still exist such as the deep sea life forms that live near the sulphur plumes here on Earth?


You seem predisposed to look at humanity as bad. I think raping another planet that does not have life is preferable to destroying our own. Humans are of nature just like everything else. What we do is exactly what nature intended so why the negativity? Nearly all living creatures change the environment they live in/on. We are just faster at it. We NEED to move out into space to get resources so we can continue to survive and evolve. We are not evil, though some of us do some evil things to each other.

Sure, I can see life living in a bunch of different places if it has a chance to get started.



Wrong
With our intelligence, Nature gave us the choice to live how we choose to live. Not because we are living like parasites, like cancer that it is okay to continue. When we move past our greed, violence and hatred let's colonize the entire universe!
But right now I am so glad this Planet is beyond our reach



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 04:28 AM
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I'd like to know what is this "first habitable zone planet" and "first Earth-like" planet BS is. Four years ago they already found one, the Gliese 581c which is 20 lightyears away. So I'm curious what is the difference between this and that one? Why this one is advertised as the FIRST, when the first was already found years ago. Deja vu anyone? Or did everyone forget that one?






edit on 7-12-2011 by Sentinel412 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 04:52 AM
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Just watched a show on the first planets thought to be habitable. They have been mentioned in previous posts. I think it was a day before the announcement.I don't think it is a coincidence. Was on the science channel I think.
This must be really big news, it even made it on my local news station yesterday.



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 05:07 AM
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reply to post by Sentinel412
 


Gliese 581c is presumed to be in a tidal lock with it's star: en.wikipedia.org... . Which means one side of it always faces the star and is very hot and the other one, which never faces the star is very cold. Therefore the conditions aren't quite the same as here on Earth.



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 05:38 AM
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reply to post by Shenron
 

Then Wikipedia was rewritten by someone. The tidal lock was for Gliese 581D and not for Gliese 581C. Gliese 581C is still and always been reported habitable without any problem. Gliese 581D is the ill fated tidal locked planet in the system.
edit on 7-12-2011 by Sentinel412 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 05:39 AM
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reply to post by Sentinel412
 


gliese is a different kind of star to our sun. This planet is the first to be discovered in the HZ of a sun-like star.



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 05:41 AM
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reply to post by yeti101
 

I'm well aware of this, but every news channel presented K22B as the first habitable planet. If you check all the news channels, no one mentions the first sun-like star, just the first habitable. Like if G581C would not even exist (Few of my friends also had a Deja Vu because of this, because they completely forgotten G581C until I mentioned it to them.).
edit on 7-12-2011 by Sentinel412 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:04 AM
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reply to post by Sentinel412
 


the mainstream media are always terrible at reporting astronomy news. Doesnt help when the astronomers over-play every discovery.

you just bought the hype surrounding gliese581c. It has an orbital period of 12 days it must be tidally locked. Its also not an "earth-sized" planet it's another super earth at 5.6 earth mass.

Both of these planets will be more like neptune than earth. The rest is just hype.
edit on 7-12-2011 by yeti101 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:25 AM
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I never learned about Gliese 581C from the media. And as I said G581D is the tidally locked, not C. Three were considered as possibly habitable in the Gliese 581 system; C, D and G. G was drawn out, D is tidally locked, C is still on the list. That one never was tidally locked, regardless what the wikipedia is stating now (The locked one is and always been the G581D.).

Also the mass size of K22B is also not known. Until it is not known, this news sounds like hype, nothing more.
edit on 7-12-2011 by Sentinel412 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:36 AM
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reply to post by Sentinel412
 


It's my understanding that in the astronomical community it has been revised.

Gliese 581 system.



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:46 AM
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reply to post by Sentinel412
 


show me your sources from the astronomy community that backs up what you say.

the wiki is quite comprehensive.
edit on 7-12-2011 by yeti101 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:52 AM
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I know a better one. Show me one which actually revised and stated that Gliese 581C is not habitable (Other source than Wikipedia, what everyone can edit freely.). Because I can't find any. But I can find many sources, including prominent science sites which stating that Gliese 581C is a habitable earth-like planet. And this state hasn't changed in the last four years (Only on Wikipedia, what every moron can edit freely.). And please don't try to confuse G581D with G581C again. Thanks.
edit on 7-12-2011 by Sentinel412 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 06:56 AM
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reply to post by Sentinel412
 



ok it was initially reported that it might be habitable. But the press turns this into "earth 2" which nobody actually said. What the scientists actually said was that it might be able to sustain life. Really they're talking microbes very simple life becuase of the possibility of liquid water.

but it turns out its too close to the star to be habitable. Its also 5.4 earth mass. Not somewhere we would want to visit on holiday.


But new simulations of the climate on Gliese 581c created by Werner von Bloh of the Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany and his team suggest the planet is no Earthly paradise, but rather a faraway Venus, where carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere create a runaway greenhouse effect that warms the planet well above 212 degrees Fahrenheit (100 Celsius), boiling away liquid water and with it any promise of life.


www.space.com... this is from 2007

p.s on wiki they have citations. press the little number and you can see where the info comes from. In this case its mostly scientific papers & journals which are the source of the information.
edit on 7-12-2011 by yeti101 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 7 2011 @ 07:05 AM
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Tricky. They drawn G581C and G581D together on Wikipedia. They're using the very same excuse there. So regardless what your link says, I still remember that G581C is still habitable and G581D is the tidally locked (While now both named as tidally locked. Ha-ha-ha. If someone is intending to fake the past and the present at least do it right, not with copy-paste information, applying for both.).
edit on 7-12-2011 by Sentinel412 because: (no reason given)




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