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Monday, March 24, 2014

The Closest Earth Like Planet Yet

Using the Kepler images, Mr Barclay said he believes he has found a new star system consisting of five planets orbiting an M1 dwarf star.

M dwarfs are stars that are much smaller and dimmer than Earth’s sun, and aren’t bright enough to be seen with the naked eye.
 
Also known as red dwarfs, these stars make up around 70 per cent of all the stars in the galaxy and range in size.

By comparison, our sun is called a G dwarf, and these type of dwarfs account for only 5 per cent of stars in the universe.

The outermost planet in Barclay’s five-planet system is said to be 1.1 times the size of Earth and is called a goldilocks planet because it orbits within the M1 dwarf’s habitable zone.

Although other Earth-like planets have been discovered previously, Barclay’s unnamed goldilocks planet is believed to be the closest in size to our own.

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