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Twin Star/Twin Planet System

 
Anonymous Coward
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United Kingdom
09/05/2012 02:02 PM
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Twin Star/Twin Planet System
The discovery of the first alien planet with two suns — like the "Star Wars" world Tatooine — residing in its parent star’s habitable zone is good news for the search for life beyond Earth, scientists say.

The planet, known as Kepler-47c, is a gas giant and therefore probably not suitable for life as we know it. But its existence hints that smaller, rockier worlds may inhabit other two-star systems’ habitable zones —that just-right range of distances where liquid water can exist.

And that’s important, because there are a lot of binary systems out there, scientists say.

"Roughly half of the stars in the galaxy are in binary systems," study lead author Jerome Orosz, of San Diego State University, told SPACE.com. "I thought it would only be a matter of time before we found a system like Kepler-47 where a planet is in the habitable zone."

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