When I heard that there are more stars in the universe than grains of sand on Earth, it blew my my mind.
To think that there are one hundred billion galaxies, and each of those galaxies have trillions of stars, and those stars have their own planets, I just knew that we couldn't be alone in this universe.
The odds that there's alien life on other planets is extremely likely.
The reason why we have a difficult time to find these habitable planets can be for many reasons.
One of them being that the universe is massive.
We don't have the technological means to communicate with alien life or explore much beyond our own solar system.
And it doesn't help that the universe is expanding, pushing us farther away from other galaxies and possible alien civilizations.
That being said, scientists are not giving up their search to find extraterrestrial life. And after decades of research, they've made a startling new discovery.
Planet Ross 128 b
Eleven light-years away lies a potentially habitable planet known as Ross 128 b.
Scientists found this exoplanet, which orbits a small red dwarf star, last year, but now believe it has the conditions to host life.
Diogo Souto, of the Observatório Nacional in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and his team published the study in Astrophysical Journal Letters.
Ross 128 b's radius is believed to be less than 1.7 times that of Earth, which means the exoplanet likely has a rocky terrain, just like our own, making it habitable for life.
Researchers determined that the star is rich in iron, magnesium, oxygen, aluminum, calcium, carbon, potassium, and titanium.
"Although Ross 128 b is not Earth's twin, and there is still much we don't know about its potential geologic activity, we were able to strengthen the argument that it's a temperate planet that could potentially have liquid water on its surface," Souto said in a statement.
Now that's a game changer.
Ross 128 b is Earth's second-closest potentially habitable planet. The first is Proxima B, which orbits the nearest star to our Solar System (Proxima Centauri).
What This Means For Us
While this is great news for many, don't plan on visiting our alien neighbors anytime soon.
Ross 128 b is 11 light-years away from Earth, which means it would take you approximately 191,251 years to travel to that exoplanet.
If the Starship Enterprise was real, that would definitely be a possibility.
Besides, researchers haven't confirmed the existence of alien life on that planet yet.
For now, we can be proud of our scientists for making these groundbreaking discoveries.
As technological advances take over our every day lives, maybe one day we'll be able to visit these far away planets.
Or maybe we'll be graced by the presence of alien life here on Earth. That is if they haven't been here already...
If it was possible to travel to these habitable exoplanets, would you go?
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