Monday, October 18, 2010

First life-friendly exoplanet may not exist

Yes, that’s the headline above a story on the New Scientist website.

It says it might be too early to claim a definitive detection of Gliese 581g. A second team of astronomers have looked for signals in their own data and failed to find it.

Francesco Pepe of the Geneva Observatory in Switzerland is quoted: "We easily recover the four previously announced planets, b, c, d, and e. However, we do not see any evidence for a fifth planet in an orbit of 37 days."  He presented the results on the 11th at an International Astronomical Union symposium in Turin, Italy.  You can be sure there will be a good old ding dong about this one.  I imagine the story will appear in the magazine on 23rd Oct.

See Yes Gliese 581g actually is a milestone

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