Most earth-like planet detected orbiting sun-like star: extraterrestrial life likely

A possible Earth-like planet was found by the Kepler Telescope; if the data is correct, then this would make it the most Earth-like world yet detected beyond our solar system.


Unglamorously named KOI 172.02 (Kepler Object of Interest), the planet is some 50% larger than Earth, orbiting its star on an orbit which would make its surface habitable. Well, to be more precise, it has a 242-day long year instead of our 365.25 day, and its mass rather makes it a super-Earth than an Earth, but the differences are small when put into the larger picture.

“This was very exciting because it’s our fist habitable-zone super Earth around a sun-type star,” said Natalia Batalha, a Kepler co-investigator at NASA’s Ames Research Center in California. “It’s orbiting a star that’s very much like our sun. Previously the ones we saw were orbiting other types of stars.”

Yep, not only does the planet resemble our planet, but the star also resembles our star – being a little cooler than the Sun, which is actually better, considering the smaller orbit.


“It’s a big deal,” astrophysicist Mario Livio, of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, explained. “It’s definitely a good candidate for life.”

Indeed, there’s no good reason for life not to exist on the planet – put quite simply, the odds are advanced lifeforms exist on the planet. Based on its characteristics, it may be either a rocky, or an ocean covered planet.

“Maybe there’s no land life, but perhaps very clever dolphins,” Livio joked.

This is once again a remarkable discovery made by the Kepler telescope, which finds planets by looking for periodic dips in the brightness of stars caused by planets passing in front of them, blocking some of their light. All of its discoveries (including this one) have to be confirmed using another method until we can take it for granted. Kepler launched in 2009 and was recently granted an extended mission until at least 2016. The telescope has detected 2,740 candidate planets thus far, with 105 being confirmed so far; hopefully, more will follow.


6 thoughts on “Most earth-like planet detected orbiting sun-like star: extraterrestrial life likely

  1. SpaceFreak

    As gravity is determined by mass, assuming the density of the planet is roughly the same, and because the planet is 1.5 times the size of Earth than it’s likely the gravity will be 1.5 times more then Earth, so you would probably feel tired after moving around for the day but it wouldn’t crush you or cause any physical damage.

  2. whoa now

    Likely to have life? These ‘scientists’ know it’s mass and orbital period – that’s it. The leap from there to likely having life is to engage in fantasy. Wise to remember that our sun has three planets in a habitable zone and two are as dead as a door nail.

  3. Lupita

    Wao Andréi you rocks !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Our minds are so tiny and limited that our train of thoughts is unable even to imagine the greatness and complexity of creation. }There are not standards. Thanks again for bringing to us such interesting information that helps us to be more opened to zillion of possilities.

  4. TheMatrixDNA

    It is arriving the time when the modern big conflict inside Astronomy will be solved: which is the right cosmological model? The Physics based model of current official Astronomy or the Biological based model of Matrix/DNA Theory? Remember that once time Copernicus was alone with his model against the academic establishment. More proved data about these different shapes of astronomical bodies that we are discovering day after day will be the final judge. The problem for Matrix/DNA interpreting this few initial data is about the question about the age of this system, for knowing which from two methods nature used for this star formation. If it is an old system (generated by symbiosis) the star must be turning cooler and the planet hotter (there is transference of energy from the star to the planet), bigger, with less weight. The planet must be getting more giants volcanoes, which eruptions will make it seems a pulsar, and he must go far away from the star orbit, for becoming a star itself. If he was able to produce life, it must be a older life than Earth, becoming non-habitable, its population more evolved than humans must be re-located to other place. Bit, if this systems is a modern one, its formation was by the method of replication, self-recycling from a died system. We have not calculated the development of such modern systems yet.

  5. Andrey

    I wonder what their women look like… at any rate, our so-called “Miss Universe” will soon find herself in a spot of bother, especially if these KOI-ards outnumber us earthlings. Assuming a democratic, voting-based election of course.

    In the likely event of a super-civilization, I really hope they dig Lady Gaga or Justin Bieber, otherwise we’re doomed.

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