- Publish Date
- Thursday, 23 February 2017, 10:46AM
NASA has recently discovered a solar system just a measly (on a cosmic scale) 39 light years away from earth, and even more exciting, has seven earth sized planets, three of which that could possibly contain life. The remarkable discovery has got us asking all types of questions; Do aliens exist? Is there an infinite number of alternative universes? Is life worth living if everything in the context of the universe is so minuscule that nothing matters and has no definitive meaning?
Well, we can't actually answer any of those things for sure. But we can discuss the meaning of life later, here's what we do know:
Scientists working with telescopes at the European Southern Observatory along with NASA have discovered seven Earth like worlds orbiting a dwarf star called TRAPPIST-1 (sounds future-y).
Three of these planets lie in the star’s 'Goldilocks Zone', a habitable zone in which water could theoretically exist. While it can't be confirmed that the others don't hold life at this point, the existence of water on these planets increase the probability.
Astronomers estimate that there could be around 40 billion habitable worlds in our very own Milky Way, which is great news if we destroy our own planet (and lets be honest, after the events of 2016, its pretty likely).
Unfortunately, getting there would still take us hundreds of millions of years with today’s technology. But at the high rate of new technological advancements in the field, it could be a lot sooner than we think.
The associate administrator of the Science Mission Directorate at NASA stated that the discovery “gives us a hint that finding a second Earth is not a matter of if, but when.”