Category: Exoplanets

So what did the Kepler space telescope discover, 715 confirmed planets later?

How about: Winning tickets almost as rare as orthodontics for hens. more

A new, lower estimate for exoplanets that could support life

The basic problem seems to be that a planet, even in the habitable zone, can mostly be a gasball with a thick, very high pressure atmosphere that would inhibit life as we know it. more

There may be life on the moons of exoplanets

Problem – The big recent news has been the discovery of highly complex life forms (comb jellies) from 600 million years ago near the beginning of the life we actually know. Fire and ice are not the source of this complexity more

Earth-mass planet turns out to be gas

It cuts into the claims about billions of habitable Earths. more

Earth more precisely balanced in relation to sun than previously realized, new study claims

Thus, life-hosting exoplanets may be rarer than hoped. more

Harvard astronomer: But maybe planets and life got started shortly after the Big Bang?

Why? Because that would make humans’ existence less special. more

Why doesn’t the Copernican Principle (Principle of Mediocrity) apply to Mars? Why just Earth?

It is entirely okay to think that Mars is unusual. That is, the solid string of disappointments over life on Mars is not expected to lead to the conclusion that it might be typical, and therefore life might be rare in the galaxy. more

We go out for coffee, and meantime nearly 9 billion habitable planets have been found

Found? “Found” is the new “extrapolated.” more

How the Mediocrity Principle invented life on other planets

What cannot be demonstrated can merely be asserted. Such pronouncements are as definitive as Abracadabra!, and every bit as likely to help us toward the desired prize. more

Pink planet challenges planet formation theories

NASA: “This is among the hardest planets to explain in a traditional planet-formation framework, … ” more

Here’s one for embattled astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez: Are proposed exoplanets just gas and dust?

When the exoplanet expert takes up his recently announced appointment at Ball U in Indiana (despite controversy), it would be interesting to see him tackle this question: The narrow, sharp-edged and slightly off-centre rings of dust that surround some stars may be the result of interactions between gas and dust, rather than the gravitational effects […] more

Alien Alert!!! New Study!!!:60billion Planets Could Support Life in Our Galaxy!!!

Recently some astronomers have dramatically increased their estimates of how many planets in our little corner of the Cosmos might fall in the habitable zone around red dwarf stars!  There could be as many as 60,000,000,000 such habitable planets in the Milky Way alone! Based on data from NASA’s planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft, scientists have predicted that […] more

Habitable planets, hype-able planets, what the diff?

If the only requirement for “habitable” is a place where liquid water could exist, lots of icy comets would be habitable, wouldn’t they? more

Tidal heating problem greatly reduces calculations of habitable planets?

“Because tidal forces vary dramatically with the distance between a planet and its star, closer orbits also result in massively larger tidal forces.” more

Astronomers: Not searching for planets to colonize is like dismissing Columbus’1492 journey?

Not sure the analogy works. Europeans in Columbus’ day had known for millennia that China existed but didn’t know of a viable sea route for trade. more

Astronomers find new planet capable of supporting hype

“The planet lies in what they describe as a ‘habitable zone’, neither too near its sun to dry out or too far away which freezes it.” more

Exoplanets found that are nearly 13 billion years old?

Obviously, this makes no sense in terms of conventionally accepted timelines for the universe. more

Tens of billions of planets in the galaxy might have water?

It may be a bit too soon to start selling real estate. They found nine super-Earths in a survey of 102 stars. But so far, super-Earths have been disappointing. more

Earth-like exoplanets? The chemical structure may be different, say researchers

‘There could be billions of Earth-like planets in the Universe but a great majority of them may have a totally different internal and atmospheric structure” more

Could life thrive on other planets in undersea caves?

“If life exists elsewhere in our solar system, it most likely would be found in water-filled subterranean environments, perhaps equivalent to those we are studying in the Bahamas.” more

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