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Proxima b, Ins & Outs of the Earth like Planet.

Proxima b, Ins & Outs of the Earth like Planet. Neighbouring star Proxima Centauri has Earth-sized planet Proxima b ins and outs What do we know about Proxima b? Is there anybody out there ??? So European Space Observatory, ESO detected what is an Earth like planet in an orbit of a star only 4.28 light years away, Proxima Cantauri, a small red dwarf star with diameter of 195 000~ km and surface temperature of approximately 3160 Kelvins. Proxima is a flare star that undergoes random dramatic increases in brightness because of magnetic activity Proxima b is thought to be a part of triple star system consisting of Alpha Centauri A and B, however separation of 2250 billion km brings some doubt to this supposition. Proxima b is a small terrestrial planet that orbits the host star at 7.2-7.5 million km from the surface of the star. However as Proxima Centauri is very small star, only one 7th the diameter of our sun and relatively cool, Proxima B falls in to what is called a habitable zone around its host star, however its position is more on the inside of the habitable zone. This is where things get tricky, in our solar system habitable zone stretches from 100 million to 320 million km from the surface of the Sun. Around Proxima Centauri habitable zone is between 6.5-7 million km on the inner side and around 20 million km on the outer side. Ideal habitable zone around Proxima Centauri however is between 10 and 15 million kilometres. Correspondingly to our solar system Proxima b would orbit our Sun at 95-97 million kilometre orbit around the Sun, so inside orbit of Venus. However further study in to Proxima b should yield more concrete results. Proxima b from what ESO has stated so far is an Earth like planet with mass of 1.28 Earths, approximate diameter of 13850-14120km and surface gravity of 1.07G~, this is if the planet is made of similar stuff Earth is made of. As soon we start talking habitability a question pops up, is there a water on the planet and if so how likely is it the planet might harbour life and what sort of life is it ?Question no doubt TESS, JWST and EELT telescopes will try to answer in coming years. Proxima b, however might be tiddly locked to its parent star showing one face to the star at all time. However this shouldn’t be the issue as planet’s atmospheric could disperse heat across the planet’s surface. From early observation it is hard to assume exact surface temperatures as these will depend on how thick the plant’s atmosphere is, but assuming planet can maintain Earth like atmosphere and atmospheric pressure, surface temperatures shouldn’t be unbearable for human, in the region of 30-32C or 307 kelvin. However if the planet is able to maintain a rotation is it rotates around its parent star every 11.2 days, surface temperatures might be more congenial to what we experience in tropics around 25Celsius or 300 Kelvin. So are there any chances of us ever getting there any time soon? Well in retrospect, the earliest human space ships could get to Proxima b, using solar sail technology, traveling at 20% of the speed of the light, would be in about 22 years. 

Published on 13 September 2016 by wholelifetv

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