Astronomers discover new types of habitable planets

 Astronomers discover new types of habitable planets

The exoplanet K2-18b (right) could harbor life.

© M. Kornmesser / dpa

University of Cambridge researchers have discovered a new type of habitable planet. This discovery could “completely change the concept of life in the universe.”

Cambridge – It could be a big step in the search for life in space: astronomers have discovered a new type of habitable planet. It is very different from Earth: hot, but with oceans and a lot of hydrogen in the atmosphere.

Discoverers from the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom named this new class hycean – a mixture of “Hydrogenum” (Latin for hydrogen) and Oceanic. The reason: The newly discovered planets have a hydrogen-rich atmosphere and a hot surface – covered in oceans.

Exoplanets: Researchers refute previous assumptions

Until now, the outer planets – that is, celestial bodies outside the solar system – between Earth and Neptune were mostly known as super-Earths…

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