What do we know about Kepler 452b
Kepler-452b: An amazing planet
Kepler-452b: The most Earth-like planet in the universe to date
May we introduce? Kepler-452b, the great cousin of our earth! It is rocky and also something very special: Kepler-452b is the most Earth-like planet to date that has ever been discovered in space. It is a full 1.5 billion years older, namely a good 6 billion years, and also quite a bit larger than our home planet.
For the employees of the US space agency NASA there is now reason to cheer and questions arise: Can we pay our big cousin a visit - or even live there one day? Are there living things, water, electricity on the Kepler-452b?
Such questions are very reminiscent of science fiction films, but the scientists at NASA are also enthusiastic about the discovery of the Earth-like planet and are absolutely thrilled.
Kepler-452b is amazingly similar to our earth
Quite far away - namely 1400 light years away - Kepler-452b orbits its sun in the constellation Swan. It takes the planet 385 days to go around the sun - amazingly similar, because our earth only needs 20 days less to go around the sun. And there is another similarity: Its sun, called "Kepler-452", is somewhat brighter and larger than our sun. It ensures that the temperatures on the planet Kepler-452b allow liquid water - a basic requirement for life!
So far, the space explorers have not been able to discover any water on Kepler-452b. Because 1400 light years are far too far away to send a spaceship or a robot. For comparison: from Earth to the dwarf planet Pluto, light takes just four and a half hours. And it took the New Horizons nine years just to travel to Pluto!
Is there life on Kepler-452b?
Jon Jenkins, NASA scientist, believes life on the distant planet is quite possible: "It is impressive that this planet has spent six billion years in the habitable zone of a star, longer than Earth. That is a possibility for the formation of life. " He cannot prove this at the moment. However, considering all the physical data collected so far, the similarity between the cosmic cousins is extraordinarily great and Jon Jenkins might be right.
The solar system was discovered by the Kepler space telescope, which has been traveling through the depths of space since 2009 and looking for distant planets. The planet hunter is named after the German astronomer Johannes Kepler (1571-1630) and has discovered almost 4,700 planet-like celestial bodies to date. NASA space researchers rate the discovery of our earth's great cousin as a milestone in planetary research.
You can watch a video from NASA about the mission and the discovery of Kepler-452b here in English:
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