Planets of Tau Ceti

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brian livesey
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Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:05 am
Location: Lancashire

Planets of Tau Ceti

Post by brian livesey »

Two "super-earths" have been discovered orbiting this star. These add to the two already known rocky planets that orbit Tau Ceti. The newly discovered planets are at the edges of the star's "Goldilock's" zone, and they may harbor life.The Tau Ceti system lies relatively close at a distance of 12 light years. The star is spectrally similar to the Sun, but with 78% of its mass.
There's evidence of a massive debris disc circling Tau Ceti, so the planets may be getting a battering by comets and asteroids.
Dr. Fabo Feng, who leads the research at the University of Hertfordshire, said: "We're getting tantalisingly close to observing the correct limits required for detecting Earth-like planets. Our detection ... is a milestone in the search for Earth analogues and an understanding of Earth's habitability." The observations are published in "The Astronomical Journal".
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