Study Reveals Newly Discovered Earth-Sized Planet Possibly Devoid of Atmosphere

Scientists have discovered a new Earth-sized planet located near its star, raising concerns about its potential lack of atmosphere. This intriguing finding challenges previous assumptions about the planet’s habitability. Researchers used the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) to detect this distant world.

The planet, named HD 21749c, orbits a K-type star, which is cooler and dimmer than our Sun. Its proximity to the star results in scorching temperatures estimated to be around 800 degrees Fahrenheit. Despite being Earth-sized, HD 21749c poses an interesting puzzle due to the possible absence of an atmosphere.

While the lack of atmosphere is not entirely confirmed, scientists speculate that the planet may have lost its atmosphere due to its proximity to the star and intense radiation. This discovery sheds light on the diverse nature of exoplanets and raises questions about the factors influencing atmospheric compositions.

The research team’s findings contribute valuable insights into planetary formation and atmospheric dynamics. Continued exploration and observation of exoplanets offer unique opportunities to further our understanding of planetary systems beyond our solar system. The detection of HD 21749c underscores the complexities of exoplanet research and the constant quest for unraveling the mysteries of the universe.

Read the full story by: MIT News