NASA discovers ‘weird’ Earth-like planet with ‘unknown’ atmosphere. Know more

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NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of New Mexico have discovered a new planet that is three times as big as Earth. The planet, named TOI-1231b is 90 light-years away from Earth, according to Nasa scientists.

Nasa discovered exoplanet TOI-1231 b orbiting an M dwarf star also known as red dwarf, according to a report by The Independent. The planet, a temperate sub-Neptune-sized body with a 24-day orbit, has a temperature is similar to our Earth because the red dwarf itself is less potent, the scientists added.


According to Nasa scientists, the planet’s atmosphere is approximately 330 Kelvin or 56.85 degrees Celsius, making it one of the coolest, small exoplanets accessible for atmospheric studies discovered yet. The Nasa scientists anticipated that there might be clouds present high in the atmosphere. Besides, the planet might also have evidence of water, they said.

According to Nasa scientists, the planet TOI1231b could have large hydrogen or hydrogen-helium atmosphere, or a denser water vapour atmosphere.

Each of these would allow astronomers to understand how planets formed differently around M dwarfs when compared to the planets around our Sun.


Nasa JPL scientist Jennifer Burt said that “One of the most intriguing results of the last two decades of exoplanet science is that, thus far, none of the new planetary systems we’ve discovered look anything like our own solar system”.

Nasa scientists said the new planet is weird, but it’s one step closer to being somewhat like Earth.

“Compared to most transiting planets detected thus far, which often have scorching temperatures in the many hundreds or thousands of degrees, TOI-1231 b is positively frigid,” Burt added.

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