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Max Planck Institute for Astronomy

Two Earth-like planets around one of the smallest stars, and a slim chance someone there might see Earth

18 Jun 2019, 02:00 UTC
Two Earth-like planets around one of the smallest stars, and a slim chance someone there might see Earth Universität Göttingen

An international team of astronomers has found two Earth-like planets around one of the smallest known stars known as “Teegarden’s star.” The planets, which orbit in the star’s habitable zone where liquid water is possible, are only a quarter and a third more massive than the Earth, respectively. The discovery helps complete our picture of the statistics of exoplanet prevalence, correcting implicit biases in earlier observations. Incidentally, hypothetical observers on those planets would soon be in a uniquely favorable position to detect our Earth, using the so-called transit method. The results have just been published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics.

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