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Nearby exoplanets might be serving as home to alien life: report
We might not be the only living beings in the universe.
Astronomers and scientists have long been looking for extraterrestrial life. Now, a new study claims that life could be evolving on the nearby planets. These planets orbiting around stars close to our solar system could serve as a home for life, despite harsh environments.
Exoplanets that have often been considered a potential place to support life. But their harsh environments make the astronomers skeptic. Many of the exoplanets are struck by an immense amount of radiation.
One such exoplanet is the Proxima-b which is located on 4.24 light years away and looks similar to our planet. But it is bombarded with 250 times more X-ray radiation than the Earth, and the UV radiation levels are beyond what we can handle.
However, a new paper suggests that it's possible to withstand such radiations. The study claims that humans have flourished despite by hit by such an environment in the past.
Astronomers Lisa Kaltenegger and Jack O'Malley-James claim that life on Earth existed when the radiation was way more intense than what has been observed on the Proxima-b and other close exoplanets.
The world was a hot mess around 4 billion years ago, said the researchers. But it was at the same time that life evolved and flourished.
This also means that other nearby exoplanets could be witnessing a similar process. All the potentially habitable - Proxima-b, TRAPPIST-1e, Ross-128b, and LHS-1140b exoplanets were examined to compare with our planet.
They found that the planets were bombarded with far more UV radiation that is being emitted by the Sun today. But it is also less than what Earth was receiving 3.9 billion years ago.
"Given that the early Earth was inhabited," the researchers wrote, "we show that UV radiation should not be a limiting factor for the habitability of planets orbiting M stars. Our closest neighboring worlds remain intriguing targets for the search for life beyond our solar system."