ASTRONOMERS believe a planet which is up to seven times the size of the Earth that could possibly support alien life does exist after analysing mystery noises emitted “from it” through space.
At only a mere 22 light years from Earth beyond our solar system, Gliese 581d, as it is currently known, could be reached in 22 years if space craft that travel at the speed of light were ever invented! (something which scientists are currently working on).
Scientists say the planet is in the “Goldilocks zone” of the red dwarf star known as Gliese 581 and believe there is enough atmospheric pressure on the solid planet that could support liquid water on its surface and not be too hot or cold for “life as we know it” to evolve.
Signals believed to be coming from the planet, first discovered in 2007, were initially identified in 2010, but research that ended in 2014 dismissed this, saying they were likely coming from ‘stellar bursts’ – which are waves of energy given off by a star.
Last year, Pennsylvania State University researchers said Gliese 581d, and a smaller companion planet Gliese 581g, two to three times Earth’s mass, were a trick of the light caused by magnetic bursts from a star 22 light-years away.
Now, a fresh study claims that the original research was flawed because it was based on inadequate analyses of the data, and that G 581d does actually exist!
The latest British research argues strongly that the method used in Pennsylvania should only have been carried out on larger planets, and could potentially fail to pick up smaller ones like GJ 581d.
Dr Guillem Anglada-Escudé, lead author of the research at Queen Mary University, London and the University of Hertfordshire, claims to have used a more accurate model on existing data.
She said: “The existence of GJ 581d is significant because it was the first Earth-like planet discovered in the ‘Goldilocks’-zone around another star.
The existence of GJ 581d is significant because it was the first Earth-like planet discovered in the ‘Goldilocks’-zone around another star.Dr Guillem Anglada-Escudé, lead author of the research at Queen Mary University, London
“There are always discussions among scientists about the ways we interpret data but I’m confident that GJ 581d has been in orbit around Gliese 581 all along. In any case, the strength of their statement was way too strong.”
GJ 581d is believed to be the first planet outside our solar system in the Goldilocks zone around its star, which can support four other small planets.
These include Gliese 581g, which scores highly at 0.89 on an “Earth-like” index which rates planets from 0-1 in terms of similarity to our world planet density.
The planets were first discovered by astronomers using a spectrometer to “spot” them in the night sky.
This clever device measures “wobbles” in the wavelength of light emitted by a star caused as a planet orbits it.
At the time if the discovery seven years ago, jot caused quite a stir and Documentary-maker RDF and social-networking site Bebo used a radio telescope in Ukraine to send a powerful beam of information containing 500 messages from the public in the form of radio waves – to Gliese 581d.
Dr Stephen Kane, a US Astronomer, urged strongly for caution.
He said “Some people call these habitable planets, which we have no idea if they are. We simply know that they are in the habitable zone, and that is the best place to start looking.”
It almost feels like every day we are hearing news of habitable planets being discovered, but that is not surprising considering there could be up to Earth sized planets orbiting in the habitable zones of sun like stars and red dwarfs in the milky way, 11 billion of which may be orbiting Sun-like stars!
Could this be a further step forward to Disclosure, accepting that that there could be a signal being emitted from another planet? quite possibly!
Gone are the times when you hear scientists highlight those famous old words “are we alone in the Universe!” if anything we are far from alone, in fact its infested out there in the very Galaxy that we class as home in the Universe, The Milky Way!
Is it a good idea to try and contact other worlds in the search for life? Damn right it is, it would be a crime to not call out to other beings out there in the Great Unknown. Perhaps we might even learn where our ET friends who visit us are coming from….
These are exciting times people!