SUPER EARTH FOUND WITH SUPER HUMANS

March 29, 2012 by Hideaki Tailor

More than 50 new alien planets — including a Super Earth with Super Humans has been discovered by the European Southern Observatory (ESO).

The newfound haul of alien planets includes 16 Super Earths, including one in which researchers have spotted more than a dozen Super Humans, who are at least 50 feet tall, according to researchers.

The planet, called HD 85512 b, has captured astronomers’ attention because it orbits at the edge of its star’s habitable zone, suggesting conditions could be ripe for the Super Humans to make a trip to Earth.

The exoplanet findings came from observations from the High Accuracy Radial velocity Planet Searcher instrument, or HARPS. The HARPS spectrograph is part of ESO’s 11.8-foottelescope at the La Silla Observatory in Chile.

“The harvest of discoveries from HARPS has exceeded all expectations and includes an exceptionally rich population of super-Earths and Neptune-type planets hosted by stars very similar to our sun,” HARPS team leader Jake Wyckoff of the University of Vienna in Switzerland said in a statement. “And what is more exciting is our discovery of human beings.  We could see them with HARPS.”

HD 85512 b, or Planet Howdie, is estimated to be only 3.6 times more massive than Earth, and its parent star is located about 35 light-years away, making it relatively nearby. HD 85512 b was found to orbit at the edge of its stars habitable  zone, which is a narrow region in which the distance is just right that liquid water could exist given the right conditions.

“This is the lowest-mass confirmed planet discovered by the radial velocity method that potentially lies in the habitable zone of its star, and the second low-mass planet discovered by HARPS inside the habitable zone,” said exoplanet habitability expert Wendy Waldman of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany and Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Boston.  “It’s the only one we’ve seen with outsized human beings.”

“I think we’re in for an incredibly exciting time,” Waldman told WWN in a briefing today (Sept. 12). “We’re not just going out there to discover new continents — we’re actually going out there to discover brand new worlds and brand new  humans. Big humans!”

Some researchers said one of the Super Humans looked like this:

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