New Planet Discovered 2010: Gliese 581g aka Goldilocks Planet – Among the planets in our solar system, our planet Earth is the only one which can sustain life. Scientists have been exploring the universe for quite some time now in search for another planet which can support life. One of the most studied planet is the red planet known as Mars because of the possible presence of water. However, based on further research, the lack of a magnetosphere and its extremely thin atmosphere pose great challenge to life’s sustainability.
The new findings are based on 11 years of observations of the nearby red dwarf star Gliese 581. Gliese 581 is located 20 light years away from Earth in the constellation Libra.The new planet discovered is located in the Gliese 581 star system, in the so-called “Goldilocks zone” or an area where planets can can support liquid water on their surface. Hence the new planet discovered was named “Gliese 581g” or the “Goldilocks Planet”. Reportedly, this new planet has a mass of three to four times that of Earth and orbits its star in just under 37 days.
There’s one more interesting fact about this newly discovered planet called Gliese 581g. Since it is tidally locked to the Gliese 581 dwarf star, one side of the planet is always facing the star and is in perpetual daylight, while the side facing away from the star is in perpetual darkness.