When in 2016, scientists discovered a system of threeplanets in the constellation of Aquarius, a real sensation occurred in the scientific world, because all open objects in their dimensions were very similar to Earth. A year later, 4 more exoplanets were found in the system, which turned the Trappist-1 system into one of the most potentially inhabited places located in the immediate vicinity of our solar system. The discovery of the exoplanet closest to the Earth, Proxima-b, located just 4.2 light-years from Earth in the habitable zone of its star, the red dwarf, was also successful. According to the phys.org portal, scientists are now ready to begin an active search for alien life on distant exoplanets. How exactly will humanity try to do this? Let's try to understand this article.
Is there life on Proxima Centauri?
In order to understand if there are anysigns of life in other worlds, astronomers need to find out whether its organic components can appear in the light imprint of the planet. The presence of life on a particular exoplanet can produce a characteristic combination of molecules in its atmosphere, thus betraying itself treacherously.
Researchers believe that in the near futureIn the future, we will be able to observe the atmosphere of exoplanets with the help of new, complex ground-based telescopes that will allow us to explore the climate of distant worlds and, possibly, determine their biota. Due to the fact that our galaxy is literally teeming with a huge number of M-dwarfs or red, cold stars, the search for potentially inhabited planets will begin, first of all, from studying the surroundings of these small by cosmic standards objects.
All over the Milky Way, our deargalaxies, astronomers have already discovered more than 4,000 exoplanets, some of which are in the habitable zone of their stars - an area that provides conditions suitable for life to exist.
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To explore the atmosphere of these places, scientistswe need new next-generation telescopes, one of which can be the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), which is currently under construction in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile; the giant telescope is expected to be commissioned in 2025. According to plans, scientists want to aim a giant telescope eyepiece with a mirror about half the size of a football field on the exoplanets Proxima-b and Trappist-1e. At the same time, it is known that the future telescope will have more than 250 times greater light collection power than the Hubble Space Telescope.
See also: Astronomers continue to wonder about the habitability of the planetary system TRAPPIST-1
Scientists at Cornell University claim thatELT's high-resolution spectrographs are capable of detecting water, methane, and oxygen for both Proxima b and Trappist-1e if these planets look like our own pale blue world.
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Currently, we can only assumewhat exactly are the closest worlds to Earth like. Perhaps both planets have similar terrestrial air shells, although with a higher degree of probability they are just deserts burnt by the solar wind and radiation.