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Earth’s Long-Distance Siblings

Earths Long-Distance Siblings

Following the recent ventures of space exploration and the means of satellites, NASA recently announced the findings of another Earth-sized exoplanet orbiting in the habitable zone of a star called TOI-700, a solar system with only four known planets orbiting this star along with only two of the four planets being potentially habitable. This can considerably impact the idea of other lifeforms living out in outer space and add more data to existing tables for astronomers around the globe.

To better understand the importance of this discovery is to understand what a habitable zone means. A habitable zone is just a term that means a certain orbiting distance a planet must be from its star to create sustainable liquid water and hopes of other vegetation similar to Earth, representing the potential inhabitants of life. 

With this knowledge, even if the planet was found from early January 2020 through May 2021, astrologers and researchers are still conducting studies on the twin planet, TOI-700 e. However, other planets have potential life concurring onto it within this long-distanced solar system. From earlier studies of this solar system, the existence of TOI-700 d, another Earth-sized exoplanet, was found in this solar system on January 3, 2020, within the habitable zone with a significant chance of other intelligent life. Both TOI-700 e & d contain similarities to that of the Earth; other than simply being in the habitable zone, their comparable sizes to that of Earth are impacting as it aligns them with the Goldilock principles that allow more life to thrive.  TOI-700 e is within 95% of the Earth’s radius, with NASA’s TESS (Transitioning Exoplanet Survey Satellite) discovered that TOI-700 e has a mass of about 0.818 Earths and takes 27.8 days to orbit once around its star. In addition, TOI-700 d has an orbital period of roughly 37.4 days and a radius of around 1.19 times that of Earth, both close but not the same as Earth’s. More so, the planets in the habitable zone create the possibility of nonharmful particles existing in their atmosphere due to water and the growth of trees. 

With all these similarities and other defining features of the planets, they can be understood as underlying foundations to what it may take to ensure life exists since the worlds are considerably the same as our own, along with adding insights into the diverse range of conditions that life can sustain in, bettering the research of what exoplanets can withhold. 

NASA’s TESS project and its satellite have made it all the more possible for astronomers and other scientists to research better possibilities for extraterrestrial intelligence and the possibility of moving to another planet similar to ours. Although it is unlikely that these beautiful planets will meet the touch of human civilization due to them being 104.7 light years away, they still hold considerable importance to the overall theme of humans not being alone in the vastness of space. Along with allowing astronomers and space enthusiasts to try and create space travel

(Image of the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, launched April 18, 2018, and costing roughly 200 million USD (2013) )

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About the Contributor
Asher Finkle, Staff Writer
Asher Finkle is currently a senior at Quakertown Community High School and taking his first year intodeep diving into journalism. Asher enjoys listening to music while writing his articles and walking hisdogs. His goal for this year is to push his limits and get another year in Distinguished Honors. He israther exhilarated by what this year holds for him.

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