Alien breakthrough? Scientists detect water in potentially habitable exoplanet

Water found for the first time on super Earth exoplanet

What they found suggests that the composition of K2-18b's atmosphere could range from 0.1 percent water vapor (about the proportion in Earth's upper atmosphere) to a whopping 50 percent.

"Thanks to our observations and out climate model of this planet, we have shown that its water vapor can condense into liquid water", he added.

Some reasons project that life could be possible on K2-18b due to its close distance with its star and large probability of light of its star to pass through the atmosphere.

The research teams used archived data from the Hubble Space Telescope and other spacecraft to analyze the planet's atmosphere. It orbits the sun K2-18, a red dwarf star in the constellation Leo, in the so-called habitable Zone - a distance from its parent sun, could allow the permanent existence of liquid water on its surface.

Mr. Tsiaras stressed that this is not a new Earth, but it opens up many other possibilities.

In an "incredibly exciting" finding, astronomers have for the first time discovered water in the atmosphere of a planet orbiting a distant star outside our solar system with Earth-like temperatures that could support life. Super Earths are defined as having a mass greater than Earth but less than gas giants like Uranus and Neptune; more than 1,260 have been confirmed to date. Accordingly, further research on this habitable-zone exoplanet is needed to measure the alien world's cloud coverage and the volume of atmospheric water vapor.

"In the next five or ten years the James Webb Space Telescope and others are being launched that are created to ... find more details of the atmosphere".

The planet is so close to its cool host star that it takes just 33 days to orbit.

The discovery was accomplished by using the Hubble telescope, the researchers said.

More than 4,000 exoplanets of all types and sizes have been detected overall.

The star, glowing red in the day sky, is believed to bombard the planet with radiation harsh enough to quickly inflict any human visitors with cancer, although "life there may have evolved differently" in order to survive, noted the London team's Ingo Waldmann.

Results also indicated the presence of hydrogen and helium in k2-18b's atmosphere. The planet exists in our habitable zone of its host star.

The surface, meanwhile, could be wet or dry. Rocky exoplanets are smaller, making them harder to find and more difficult to study. The planet likely resembles Nepture with no solid surface with fluctuating temperature and pressure.

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