NASA’s space telescope has discovered a near Earth-sized planet within the Milky Way galaxy. The study released on Monday by the aerospace giant states that the exoplanet orbits the most common type of star in the galaxy.
The study also indicates that the surface of the exoplanet could be similar to the barren exterior of Mercury or earth, probably covered in dark volcanic rock.
According to astronomers, the exoplanet which is called LHS 3844b is located 48.6 light-years away from Earth and is among the 4,000 exoplanets discovered by astronomers within the Milky Way in the last twenty years.
Locked in a tight orbit, the exoplanet revolves around a cool star known as the red dwarf and takes 11 hours to complete a revolution. The exoplanet lacks atmosphere, due to the fact that its parent red dwarf produces intense radiation which affects it. The red dwarf also emits high levels of UV light through dim stellar standards, the study added.
The exoplanet was spotted by NASA’s newly launched orbiting telescope, Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite in 2018. The new telescope is considered to be very powerful in terms of detecting objects in the distant world.
The lead author of the study, Laura Kreidbergsaid:“The temperature contrast on this planet is about as big as it can possibly be”.
Interestingly, 80 percent of the universe is still missing. It’s still a mere impossible thing for humans to explore at least half of the solar system itself with its current technology as compared to so-called possibly extra-terrestrial lives, if they exist.