NASA satellite finds potentially habitable, Earth-sized planet

by Jordyn Pair · Jan 7th, 2020 3:03 pm

A NASA satellite designed to search for planets has discovered a potentially habitable, Earth-sized planet orbiting a star.

NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) found a planet, called TOI 700 d, orbiting around a star in a range of distances that could allow for the presence of liquid water on the planet's surface. The find was confirmed using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

"TESS was designed and launched specifically to find Earth-sized planets orbiting nearby stars," said Paul Hertz, astrophysics division director at NASA Headquarters in Washington, in a statement. "Planets around nearby stars are easiest to follow-up with larger telescopes in space and on Earth. Discovering TOI 700 d is a key science finding for TESS."

Scientists determined that TOI 700 d is orbiting a small, cool M dwarf star, also known as a red dwarf. It is located more than 100 light-years away in the constellation Dorado.

NASA has previously discovered other Earth-sized planets, including several in the TRAPPIST-1 system.


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