NASA spots potentially-habitable Earth-size planet in neighbouring star system

A new Earth-size planet has been found – and there's a real chance it could support human life.

Found around 100 light-years away by NASA, the planet is actually orbiting a neighbouring star system.

The planet has been given the catchy name of TOI 700 e, and is thought to be around 95% of the size of planet Earth.

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The planet was first spotted by the boffins at NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite.

It is the second such planet found in recent years, after TOI 700 d was found in 2020.

The new planet is said to be mostly rocky, but was found at the correct distance needed from a star to hold water.

Emily Gilbert, from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said: “This is one of only a few systems with multiple, small, habitable-zone planets that we know of.

“That makes the TOI 700 system an exciting prospect for additional follow-up.

“Planet e is about 10% smaller than planet d, so the system also shows how additional TESS observations help us find smaller and smaller worlds.”

There has actually been seven exoplanets found by the experts, some of which are smaller then TOI 700 e – one of which, TOI 700 c, is actually two-and-a-half times bigger than our own planet.

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That one is said to take 16 days to orbit its own star – or moon – while they are all said to be “tial locked” which means it always shows the same side to the moon.

The newly found planet, actually takes around 28 days to orbit its star.

According to the experts at Big Think, the planet is “our best chance of finding alien life”.

They said: “Although we have yet to find our first instance of an inhabited planet beyond planet Earth, it’s something that’s not only within the reach of 21st century technology, it’s something that we’re closing in on, little by little, with each subsequent observation.

“There are now a small number of systems that make excellent targets in the quest for life beyond our own backyard, and at just 101 light-years away, TOI-700 might provide humanity with our best opportunity yet.”

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