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Dwarf Stars and Exoplanets – Are We Alone?
Posted: 28 October, 2014

Dwarf Stars and Exoplanets – Are We Alone?

Dwarf Stars and Exoplanets – Are We Alone?

The first lecture of the Space Science two-weeker was an informative live online talk by Prof. Andrew West of Boston University. He talked about the properties and activity of M-dwarf stars – some of the smallest, dimmest, and oldest, but also most abundant and most active stars in our Galaxy. He discussed the recent observations of extrasolar planets (exoplanets), and their distribution as a function of the type of host star, their size and distance from their host star.

The surprising and exciting result he shared was that statistically, there seem to be a really big number of planets that are very similar to Earth in size, orbiting in the habitable zone around dwarf stars. So it seems very unlikely that we are alone in the Universe! We just have to wait between two and ten years until Astronomers have discovered a habitable planet similar to Earth, and then try to phone them.


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