06 November 2007

A "Second" Earth? Cripes--We're Not Done Ruining The First One Yet!

Here's proof that the romance of the Space Age is officially over--the public and media indifference that greeted the discovery of another planet in another solar system!

The planet is approx. 45 times the mass of Earth and has an orbital cycle of 260 days. It joins the four others orbiting the star "55 Cancri", in the "Cancer" constellation.

The best news is that it occupies what is called a star's "Goldilocks' or "habitable" zone--not too hot, not too cold--where liquid water and mild temperatures could exist. But scientists are more interested in its moon, which could be more habitable to Earth-like life.

But don't go firing up the jet pack just yet--it's 41 light years away, or (scribbling calculations on my chalkboard...) 240,906,832,298,136 miles, and the scientists at San Francisco State U figure its conditions are probably more like those of Saturn, which, as we all know, is where the giant worms live, as documented in the film "Beetlejuice".

Read all the detail here courtesy of Canoe.