New UCSD Research Suggests Life on Other Planets - NBC 7 San Diego

New UCSD Research Suggests Life on Other Planets

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    NBC 7's Danielle Radin talks to an astrophysics about an out-of-this-world discovery from University of California, San Diego. (Published Friday, Aug. 11, 2017)

    In the Milky Way Galaxy, about 40 light years away, is a system of seven Earth-sized planets called Trappist-1.

    The far away worlds orbit a star similar to our sun but smaller and colder. However, the planets orbit closer to the sun than our planets and some might even have water.

    Astrophysicists said it suggests there could be life on these planets.

    "We really had no handle on the age of Trappist-1," said  Adam Burgasser, an astrophysicist with the University of California, San Diego. "So our study went and looked at all the evidence on the star and got an age for it."

    Burgasser said the star is a lot older than initially thought, meaning life has had more time to develop in the system.

    "We think it’s about 7 and a half to 9 billion years old," said Burgasser. "Which is about twice as old as the sun in our solar system."

    Burgasser said his team was able to find the age of Trappist-1 by measuring the changes and movement of the stars in the system.

    "There’s many earth size planets orbiting, probably most of the stars in the galaxy," said Burgasser. "The chance that there’s no life is probably very small at this point.”