Scientists Find A 'Super-Earth' Among 60 New Neighbouring Planets

Researchers have discovered 60 new planets including Gliese 411b which has a rocky surface and is located in the fourth nearest star system to the sun

An artist's impression of hot super-Earth, Gliese 411b.

One specific planet, Gliese 411b, has been gaining huge attention and it is Known as a "hot super Earth with a rocky surface", Gliese 411b is situated in the fourth-nearest star system to the Sun, making it the third nearest planet to the Sun, as per the U.K.'s University of Hertfordshire, which was involved in the research.

The planet has the decidedly unsexy name Gliese 411b - Gliese 411 being the name of the star it orbits, and "b" being the unique label for the world itself - but what it lacks in a cool moniker it makes up for with a fiery personality.

The discovery of 411b and the estimated 59 other planets was done through the Lick-Carnegie Exoplanet Survey, in which the Keck-I telescope in Hawaii was mounted with a spectrometer to identify 114 planets and an estimated 1,600 stars since the experiment began in the 1990s.

The discovery was led by astronomers' Steve Vogt, Geoffrey Marcy and Paul Butler.

Dr. Tuomi, from the University of Hertfordshire's Centre for Astrophysics Research explained that it's very awesome that every closest star has a planet around it.

"This is something astronomers were not convinced about, even as little as five years ago", he said in a statement.

A visualisation shows red and blue shifts of starlight caused by a planet's gravitational pull as astronomers have discovered 60 new planets orbiting stars near the Earth's solar system
Astronomers discover hot SUPER Earth Gliese 411b which could be home to alien life

"These new planets also help us better understand the formation processes of planetary systems and provide interesting targets for future efforts to image the planets directly".

The data shows the crowning achievements of Dr. Butler as an astronomer. "Over the recent years it has been established as a scientific fact that there are more planets in the Universe than there are stars". It represents a good chunk of my life's work'.

Tuomi, who was also involved in the discovery of Proxima b, told Fox News that the latest batch of planets marks a significant discovery.

Dr Tuomi added: 'Keck-I telescope and its instruments have been wonderful tools in establishing the current consensus that virtually all stars have planets orbiting them. Scientists historically assumed that only a few stars had planets but there appears to be a almost infinite number of planets beyond the solar system based on recent surveys of the sky.

HIRES detects exoplanets using the "radial velocity" method: The instrument picks up the tiny gravitational wobbles that orbiting worlds induce in their parent stars.

Astronomers recently discovered new worlds in 54 planets.

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