Astronomers at NASA found a solar system that has seven earth like planets. Three of the planets, being in the “Goldilocks’s zone” can potentially have water and therefore may harbor life. NASA announced the details of this great find on the last Wednesday after looking at the star TRAPPIST-1 for 500 hours using the Splitzer telescope.
How does NASA find Star Systems?
NASA looks at stars for days and find patterns in their blinks. Stars that have planets often gets dimmer as the planet passes in front of them. By looking at how dim the star becomes and how frequently it dims, astronomers can find out how large the planets are, their period of revolution around the star and also can determine their composition. You can look at this video to know how TRAPPIST-1 was discovered. It took around 21 days to get the details of the system.
A system around a dwarf star
The TRAPPIST-1 is a cool dwarf star. It is slightly larger than Jupiter, surrounded by 7 planets, b,c,d,e,f,g,h. The seven planets are all Earth-sized and terrestrial, according to research published in 2017 in the journal Nature. TRAPPIST-1 is an ultra-cool dwarf star in the constellation Aquarius, and its planets orbit very close to it.
TRAPPIST-1b and c receive the most light from the star and would be the warmest. TRAPPIST-1e, f and g all orbit in the habitable zone, the area where liquid water is most likely to be detected. But any of the planets could potentially harbor liquid water, depending on their compositions.
TRAPPIST-1e and TRAPPIST-1f are both shown covered in water, but with progressively larger ice caps on the night side. TRAPPIST-1g is portrayed with an atmosphere like Neptune’s, although it is still a rocky world. TRAPPIST-1h, the farthest from the star, would be the coldest. It is portrayed here as an icy world, similar to Jupiter’s moon Europa, but the least is known about it. water, depending on their compositions.