Monday, January 19, 2009

When is Earth not an Earth?

When it's a super-Earth. Don't get me wrong, the planet we live on is pretty super, but Ohio State University thinks that it's not the only type of planet that could support life.

I'm not sure if it's "thinking outside the box" or wishful thinking. Assume that there's other life out there in the galaxy. Most of the sci-fi I've read assumes that life is only going to develop on planets similar to earth. Now, a few scientists are moving in a different direction.

They think that if a planet has a liquid ocean, it can support life, so they came up with the name "super-Earth" to describe planets that could support life. This new super-Earth description can be applied to a number of larger, colder planets that are much more common than planets like ours. Super-Earths might even be present in about one-third of all solar systems. So we might actually find life out there after all.

Or it might find us first.

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1 comment:


Ohio State University should spend more time figuring out how to avoid losing this season on their home turf with their young fancy superstar quarterback to the almight Penn State Nittany Lions.

The header image is adapted from a photo taken by Bill McChesney and used under a creative commons license.
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