[Reblog]: Proximate goals

An Earth-sized planet has been discovered in a propitious orbit around a nearby star. A new phase in the search for life elsewhere is about to begin

“WE’VE been wondering what planet we’re first going to look for life on. Now we know.” Rory Barnes, of the University of Washington, puts it nicely. Proxima Centauri, the star closest to the sun, has a planet. That planet weighs not much more than Earth and is therefore presumably rocky. And it orbits within its parent star’s habitable zone—meaning that, given an atmosphere, its surface temperature is likely to permit liquid water.

continua su: The Economist

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