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Atmosphere Detected Around Earth Like Planet

It's time to ascend.

The planet is known to astronomers as GJ1132b, and is located 39 light years away from Earth.

The historic first, where for the first time ever scientists were able to detect an atmosphere around an Earth-like world, brings us that little bit closer to finding those habitable extrasolar planets that are beyond our own solar system.

The planet is around 1.4 times the size of our Earth, and has a very thick atmosphere which mostly consists of water and methane. In terms of habitability, unfortunately the surface temperature of the planet is thought to be well over 370C – so unless you have some killer air conditioning, you may have some problems.

What is exciting to know however is that once the James Webb telescope launches into production next year, scientists should be able to analyse a large amount of previously discovered planets to check for a potential atmosphere.

“What we have shown is that planets around low mass stars can have atmospheres and because there are so many of those in the Universe, it makes it that much more likely that one might have life,” said lead researcher Dr Southworth.