New “Super Earth” Planet Discovered in Six-Planet System

By: Sean Patterson - November 9, 2012

U.K. and German Astronomers announced this week that they have discovered a new “super Earth” planet that could, conceivably, have an Earth-like climate.

The planet exists in the habitable zone of a nearby star called HD 40307 and is part of a six-planet system. The system was previously believed to have only three planets, each too close to the star to support liquid water. By “avoiding fake signals caused by stellar activity,” the researchers found three new possible “super Earth” planets.

“We pioneered new data analysis techniques including the use of the wavelength as a filter to reduce the influence of activity on the signal from this star,” said Mikko Tuomi, lead author of the study and astronomer at the University of Hertfordshire. “This significantly increased our sensitivity and enabled us to reveal three new super-Earth planets around the star known as HD 40307, making it into a six-planet system.”

Of the three candidates, the one the researchers have the most intrest in is the outermost one. It’s mass is over seven times that of Earth’s, and it orbits HD 40307 at a distance similar to Earth’s distance from the Sun. The astronomers state that this is where liquid water and a stable atmosphere are possible, raising the possibility that it could support life. They also pointed out that the planet is likely to rotate on its own axis, creating a more Earth-like environment.

“The star HD 40307 is a perfectly quiet old dwarf star, so there is no reason why such a planet could not sustain an Earth-like climate,” said Guillem Angla-Escude, co-author of the study and astronomer at the University of Goettingen.

(Image courtesy the University of Hertfordshire)

Sean Patterson

About the Author

Sean PattersonSean is a staff writer for WebProNews. Follow Sean on Google+: +Sean Patterson and Twitter: @St_Patt

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  • Andrew

    this is an amazing planet and i want it to be named after me

  • tracy

    hi hi hi hi im bored

  • tracy


  • Jan

    Space is vast and God is certainly able to have other worlds formed and peopled; this is what the prophet Joseph Smith taught, so this discovery isn’t new to me, I’ve known my whole life that God said “other worlds I have heretofore formed”.

  • Uncle B

    Genesis 6,2 Hardly a secret! Interpalnetary travel not possible for the human body, but the human spirit may even be from another place, another dimension! Flat earthers, troglodites, cannot go there.

    • sockchock

      Life is too short to waste time on matching socks.
      also Life is like a box of chocolate’s, it doesn’t last long for fat people.

      but then they cant go into space before the sun explodes eather.

  • knysna

    Howzit Sean.

    I truly believe that a new super earth planet could well exist. Possibly in the six planet system, or other solar systems.

    Its a big universe and with rapid technology I don’t foresee an issue with space travel (in the very near future that is)

    That said. The crazy physicist Stephen Hawking said we better beware the aliens (extraterrestrial life forms) He thinks they coming to steal our resources.

    But LOL, I tend to differ. They better beware, we are on route to steal their resources, star HD 40307, in the six planet system.

    Aliens are to $hit scared to visit us, the so called human race!!! a barbaric, disease ridden race that could easily destroy them with diseases, without even having to pickup any advanced weaponry

    Just like when Columbus was followed by the Spanish conquistadors, it was not advanced weaponry which destroyed the native civilizations, but disease.

    Not so long ago we though the earth was flat, technology advancing at the speed of light.

    In the distant, no so far off, the so called human race will conquer the universe. Killing all that stands in its way for the same morals they believe and live by (the greed for money and land)

    If star HD 40307 inhabits life then I pity all life form on it, I truly do.

    We are a bunch of sad, sick, barbaric, psychotic MF’s that like to control,(power) steal (resources) and murder.

    Beware aliens, “humans” are on route to star HD 40307, in the six planet system.

    Aliens. GET THE F#CK OUT, while you still got a chance. EVACUTE the planet, their’s a bunch of disease ridden humans on route to invest you.

    • micro sat

      hi knysna, LOL OC Stephen is no more crazy than say some of the american Indians saying the same thing before the Irish aliens got there back in the day etc.

      but i do have to agree with you about the earthlings as a whole , very dangerous virus race all told to date in history.

      BUT also remember if any technology life forms exist at the 43 light year radius to earths path then they don’t get the daily murder/death/kill news and reality TV earth broadcast’s yet only hints with time dilation see then

      their home Erector Set visual electronic toy kits given to their kids for their yearly happy science day celebrations holiday or whatever are actually only really now receiving/seeing Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, on the Moon ,Jimi Hendrix died ,Pardue brothers bombed Danbury, an the original soap opera’s type broadcasts, boy are they going to get seriously worried real soon now 😉

  • http://http//

    God…. I hope the Democrats don’t get there first and ruin it.

  • Brandon

    This is a scientific article about the possibility of a “Super-Earth”, not a place for your ridiculous religious beliefs about God. Fuck your God, and everyone else who knows you. Now, I think this article is superior and I hope the human race receives the accomplishments of flying there.

  • Konsent

    Warp Drive Active

    • micro sat

      “Konsent: Warp Drive Active”

      “HD 40307 – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia 40307 is an orange (K-type) main sequence star located approximately 42 light-years away in the constellation of Pictor (the Easel)”

      the report here by Sean didn’t state this basic fact but as you can see it only 42 light-years away….

      now thats still a long way a way as we cant do light speed but Albert
      proved time is relative and we only need to reach a small % of that to get there with a set of modern day Voyager/pioneer type micro sat’s kitted out with today’s far more advanced micro sat’s engineering , but not with an old ether/or US mentality but rather kited out with several proven and cheap prototype propulsion options used in unison

      such as solar sail
      several Plasma propulsion engine types in micro form

      and micro ion thruster electric propulsion to name but 3.

    • micro sat

      this is a fun light speed tool to help you visualize time and space time dilation

      and how at for instance jack being the earth time frame relative to jill the moving space craft jack thinks 73.5 seconds have passed since jill was booted from earth orbit, but jill only thinks 10.5 seconds have passed it that time frame at 0.99 speed of light….

      keeping in mind there is also generic sling shot tectonics as used today to get up to a reasonable starting speed before you even add these other constant long term propulsion in to the plan and you get faster at time passes as theres nothing slowing you down so what real speed could we reach today with all these used at once on a set of linked generic micro sat’s

  • Stacy cooper

    There are literaly billions upon billions of star in our universe and theres billions upon billions of universes it is foolish to think we are the only ones out there