SCI/ASTRO — Here’s What We Know About The Three New Super-Earths

Looking for a new place to live? You’re in luck: NASA just discovered a brand new spot — and it’s only 21 light years away. A new study reported in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics this week pointed to a star system not far from ours that plays host to three “super-Earths” (planets with a mass larger than our home planet, but lighter than gas giants, such as Saturn and Neptune), including one made of molten rock. Although they’re technically too far for human exploration, scientific measurements have already allowed us to discover some amazing facts. So, what do we know about the nearby super-Earths?

Researchers from the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory in the Canary Islands this month discovered a K-dwarf star — stars with around half the mass of our own sun — in the constellation Cassiopeia with three planetary bodies orbiting it. A closer examination of the star system revealed that at least one of those planets was a candidate for increased exploration.




Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech