Two exoplanets like the Earth have been discovered close to us

At least two planets revolve around a star just 12 light-years away. Detected by the instrument Carmenes, specialized in the search for exonerees around the red dwarfs, they resemble the Earth. In addition, both appear in the habitable zone.

Two exoplanets a little larger than the Earth have recently been discovered in our neighborhood, some 12.5 light-years away. Their inferred masses are 1.25 times and 1.33 times that of the Earth. A year for them lasts 4.9 and 11.4 days. They were detected around the “Teegarden star” (one of the smallest red dwarfs known to astronomers) via the radial velocity method by the specialized spectrograph Carmenes on the 3.5-meter telescope at the Calar Alto observatory in Spain, which observed it for three years.

Very close to their sun, which is ten times smaller than ours and half as hot, Teegarden b and Teegarden c are in a habitable region where it is neither too hot nor too cold, so that if they are covered with water on their surface, it could be in the liquid state. That is good news.

A planetary system almost twice as old as ours

The bad thing is that their star-host, like Proxima Centauri very close to us, can suddenly get angry and violently erupt into the atmosphere of these two worlds, if they have one. Already eight billion years old, it is possible that they are rarer and less intense today. But what about in the past? Have they lost their atmospheres? Could life have developed and survived on the surface of these lands? It is too early to know, but the researchers are hopeful that in the next 10 years, with the arrival of several giant telescopes, we can see if they are wrapped in gas or not.

Perhaps today, more nobody lives there. In any case, if one of the two planets, or both, are inhabited, know that they will have chances to see us, if of course it’s not already done, between 2044 and 2096. It depends on their means of observation. Also, if they use the same techniques as us, they will be able to see the silhouette of the Earth passing in front of the Sun (this method of the transit allowed the astronomers to discover thousands of exoplanets in 25 years) several times between these two dates. What will they see? Where will our world in the second half of the 21st century?

Janice Clark

I'm a student at the University of Waterloo and am one of the main editors for 3LM News. I have many years of experience as a freelance writer and editor and, like Fred, have maintained an interest in astronomy from an early age.

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Janice Clark

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