Did you know that there are planets that could house human life outside of Earth? Scientists have been finding several potentially habitable planets for years now. In fact, as of October 2020, astronomers published a study in the Astrobiology Journal that lined out 24 new planets that they claimed to be “Superhabitable.” Of course, scientists considered several different factors to come to their conclusion.
For our list, we focused not only on how close these planets are to us, their size, potential habitability, age, and obviously the health of their star(or sun). We should also make you aware that we’ll be listing their distance in lightyears. In case you’re unaware, 1 lightyear is around 6 trillion miles. While quite a long way, the trip might be worth it if some of these planets are truly habitable.
- Distance: 13.8 Lightyears
- Star: Wolf 1061
- Constellation: Ophiuchus
The Wolf 1061c Exoplanet is really impressive and among the closest planets to Earth outside of our own solar system. It is actually located in the Ophiuchus System where it neighbors a red dwarf star called simply, Wolf 1061. Red Dwarfs are among the most common types of stars in The Milky Way. Yet it can be hard to spot them due to their lower luminosity.
As a result, it took us a long time to not only see this area but it took us even longer to actually notice a planet there. The University of New South Wales, Australia managed to spot the Wolf 1061c planet on December 17, 2015. When they reported their findings, studies went underway. It was confirmed to be a rocky planet a lot like Earth. Yet unlike the Earth, Wolf 1061c takes exactly 17.6 days to orbit around its star. Earth takes 365 days to do so. It has been called a “Super-Earth” due to its size. The planet is 4.3 times the size of Earth, which could be why its gravity is 1.6 times that of Earth too. However, this is not a dealbreaker. This is why it is among the known planets that could house human life!