Earth-sized planet found in star’s habitable zone

Exoplanet could have liquid water, which astronomers consider crucial for possible alien life

By Christopher Crockett, 13:43 PM April 17, 2014

Earth, meet your distant cousin. The Kepler space telescope has turned up a potentially water-bearing world nearly as small as our planet. The planet is the smallest one found in any star’s habitable zone, a temperate region surrounding a star that is suitable for liquid water.

Elisa Quintana, an astronomer at the NASA Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., and colleagues discovered the planet, Kepler-186f, in data from the first three years of Kepler’s mission. The planet is 10 percen...

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