Not Too Hot, Not Too Cold - Have Scientists Finally Found The 'Goldilocks' Planet?

By Meera Dolasia on October 1, 2010

Word Search

It's not too hot, not too cold, not too large, not too small, not too far from its star, not too close . . . . . . In short, it is perfect, should we dare say it? To harbor life! At least that's the opinion of two smart astronomers - And many others seem to agree with them.

Discovered by Paul Butler from The Carnegie Institution of Washington and Steve Vogt from U.C. Santa Cruz, the Gliese 581G lies 20 light years or about 120 trillion miles away from Earth. It is about three and a half times the size of earth, slightly wider and seems to have both gravity and atmosphere.

However, there are stll many things that we don't know about the new planet. It is much closer to its star, Gliese 581 (no G!) - about 14 million miles away as opposed to the 93 million miles that lie between the Sun and our planet. But, the scientists believe that is not a problem, because the Gliese 581 is a dwarf star and hence, not as intense as our Sun.

Thanks to the shorter distance, the Gliese 581G takes only 37 days to orbit around the sun. However, unlike Earth, it doesn't rotate fully on its own axis, which means that half of the planet gets 24-hour sunlight and is probably very hot, while the other half, is always dark and freezing.

Also not known for sure, is if the Gliese 581G has any water or if the gas its  atmospthere is made up of, is capable of supporting life.

The Gliese 581G is the sixth planet that has been discovered revolving around the dwarf star Gliese 581 and, is not the first to have created this kind of excitement. Not too long ago, scientists believed that Gliese 581C was perfect to sustain life, only to later discover that is was too hot.

Will Gliese 581G finally be the Holy Grail that scientists have been searching for  many years? Who knows, but it is always fun to speculate and then imagine what kind of life lives on it. Of course, to the scientists, even a single-celled amoeba is evidence of life, but we are hoping it's a little more exciting than that!

sources: news.yahoo.com,csmonitor.com

Share by EmailShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on TwitterShare on tumblrShare on StumbleUponShare on PinterestShare on RedditShare on Edmodo
384 Comments
to use your custom avatar.
  • krozman
    krozmanMonday, October 20, 2014 at 12:21 pm
    My dream has been to actually understand that another Earth with other.............. US, could be on it. Woudn't be suprised to find that some of the same species live there, or simillar species. Since the Universe so big, yet so small the chances are limited that more humans could actually live there. Since the artist didn't include the fact that there may be some lighting there, that species that is there could be more ahead of us, more.... intelligent. Just can't wait to see what else is ahead of our Universe
    • twilightmist
      twilightmistThursday, October 9, 2014 at 7:10 am
      XD Ta-daa!!! Ur welcome, Lavisha
      • twilightmist
        twilightmistThursday, October 9, 2014 at 7:10 am
        U go to ur profile :P THEN, you do to Personalize!
        • Star FireFriday, September 19, 2014 at 1:58 pm
          So cool
          • lavishaFriday, September 19, 2014 at 1:58 pm
            twlightmist how did u get ur picture like that?
            • twilightmist
              twilightmistFriday, September 19, 2014 at 7:41 am
              Woah, just how I imagined! :O
              • gbalgKHLAHTuesday, April 29, 2014 at 6:22 pm
                cool
                • derc
                  dercFriday, January 31, 2014 at 7:21 am
                  awesome leaving 37 days before earth blows up
                  • jamarioFriday, January 31, 2014 at 7:14 am
                    lol cant see it
                    • safiya
                      safiyaSunday, October 20, 2013 at 2:43 am
                      the third picture was so funny...hahaha!
                      • twilightmist
                        twilightmistThursday, October 9, 2014 at 7:11 am
                        Your avatar looks like a mix of Anna and Elsa Frozen! XD

                      Vocabulary

                      amoebaspeculate

                      Most Popular Articles

                      The World's Deepest Pool Is Scarily . . . Deep!
                      Making Sense Of The Ebola Virus
                      Candy That Doesn't Cause Cavities? Sweet!
                      The World's Deepest Pool Is Scarily . . . Deep!
                      Minecraft As A Mandatory Subject In School? Sweet!
                      Boo Mania Sweeps Over America (And The World)!
                      Are You Ready To 'Gangnam Style'?
                      Video Of The Week - If Frozen Was A Horror Movie . . .

                      Latest Comments

                      HockeyBoss4 wrote:

                      That is a good current event
                      Just In Time For Halloween - A R...

                      retrotaco
                      retrotaco wrote:

                      oh my gosh, that is so creepy! i...
                      Super Crystal Could Allow Mere M...

                      27 candies wrote:

                      that is a amazing!!!
                      Video Of The Week - Nickola Tesl...

                      ALA