The Goldilock World in Cygnus

kepler186f_artistconcept_2

An artist’s conception of Kepler-186f, courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

A cosmic finding: astronomers have discovered Kepler-186f, which NASA calls “the first validated Earth-size planet to orbit a distant star in the habitable zone … (it) confirms that Earth-size planets exist in the habitable zones of other stars and signals a significant step closer to finding a world similar to Earth.”

The search for a habitable world is the quest for a world that’s not too hot, not too cold, but just right — which is why it’s often called a Goldilocks world.

The catch? Kepler-186f exists some 500 light-years from Earth, in the constellation Cygnus.

There really is no place like home.

Blue Marble

Earth.

 Further reading:
NASA press release: http://www.nasa.gov/ames/kepler/nasas-kepler-discovers-first-earth-size-planet-in-the-habitable-zone-of-another-star/
Paper in the journal Science, published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (Paywall): http://www.sciencemag.org/content/344/6181/277

 

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