trappist-1

Science and Technology

NASA’s Spitzer Reveals Largest Batch of Earth-Size, Habitable-Zone Planets Around a Single Star

NASA held a news conference Feb. 22 at the agency’s headquarters to discuss the finding by the Spitzer Space Telescope of seven Earth-sized planets around a tiny, nearby, ultra-cool dwarf star. Three of these planets are in the habitable zone, the region around the star in which liquid water is most likely to thrive on a rocky planet. This is the first time so many planets have been found in a single star’s habitable zone, and the first time so many Earth-sized planets have been found around the same star. The finding of this planetary system, called TRAPPIST-1, is the best target yet for studying the atmospheres of potentially habitable,…

Science and Technology

NASA Discovery: New Solar System With 7 Earth-Like Planets

Seven Earth-sized planets have been observed by NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope around a tiny, nearby, ultra-cool dwarf star called TRAPPIST-1. Three of these planets are firmly in the habitable zone. Over 21 days, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope measured the drop in light as each planet passed in front of the star. Spitzer was able to identify a total of seven rocky worlds, including three in the habitable zone, where liquid water might be found. The system has been revealed through observations from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope and the ground-based TRAPPIST (TRAnsiting Planets and PlanetesImals Small Telescope) telescope, as well as other ground-based observatories. The system was named for the TRAPPIST…