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Trappist-1 Just the Beginning -- What's Next for NASA After Discovery of the 'Holy Grail' Solar System?

Feb 24, 2017 07:40 PM EST
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NASA revealed that there is another Solar System lurking not far from the Earth. The star system called Trappist-1 has seven Earth-sized planets and three of which could be habitable.

After the striking discovery, what could be the next for NASA? Experts say that the spotted star system dubbed as the "holy grail" is not the end but only the beginning for greater things to come.

Trappist-1 was discovered through the collaborative work of many different telescopes around the world. The new star system is located only 40 million light-years away from the planet.

"The discovery gives us a hint that finding the next Earth is not a question of if, but of when," NASA's Science Directorate head Thomas Zurbuchen, said in a press conference.

Read Also: 3 Out of 7 Newly Discovered Earth-like Planets are Potentially Habitable, NASA Reveals

Trappist-1 gave astronomers a new lead on where to search for signs of life. This means that there is much work to be done. In the coming weeks, astronomers and scientists worldwide are expected to point the most powerful telescopes towards Trappist-1. Not only is the region the best place to search for signs of life, it is also possible that one or more out of the seven exoplanets have the right chemistry and atmosphere for it to become habitable to humans.

"We just need more powerful telescopes. Those telescopes are on their way. In the next few years, we're definitely going to have more sensitive infrared telescopes. Infrared was what was used to detect this Sun and the planets around it," Robin Seemangal, space journalist said in an interview with RT. "This is just the beginning."

The discovery of Trappist-1 is not the final outcome, but the signal to push through with a bigger and more controversial mission -- to prove or disprove the habitability of the planets in Trappist-1.

Although NASA already released illustrations or graphic representation of what could the human race potentially find on Trappist-1 solar system, these are not what the real environment there looks like. Some say that the video released by NASA was used to intensify the hype about the new star system and the potentially habitable planet.


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