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Astronomers answer key question: How common are habitable planets?

Astronomers answer key question: How common are habitable planets? | The virtual life | Scoop.it
UC Berkeley and University of Hawaii astronomers analyzed all four years of Kepler data in search of Earth-size planets in the habitable zones of sun-like stars, and then rigorously tested how many planets they may have missed.

 

A major question is whether planets suitable for biochemistry are common or rare in the universe. Small rocky planets with liquid water enjoy key ingredients for biology. Astronomers now used the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Kepler telescope to survey 42,000 Sun-like stars for periodic dimmings that occur when a planet crosses in front of its host star. They found 603 planets, 10 of which are Earth size and orbit in the habitable zone, where conditions permit surface liquid water. They measured the detectability of these planets by injecting synthetic planet-caused dimmings into Kepler brightness measurements. They find that 22% of Sun-like stars harbor Earth-size planets orbiting in their habitable zones. The nearest such planet may be within 12 light-years.

 

"It's been nearly 20 years since the discovery of the first extrasolar planet around a normal star. Since then we have learned that most stars have planets of some size and that Earth-size planets are relatively common in close-in orbits that are too hot for life," said Andrew Howard, a former UC Berkeley post-doctoral fellow who is now on the faculty of the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii. "With this result we've come home, in a sense, by showing that planets like our Earth are relatively common throughout the Milky Way galaxy."


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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The virtual life
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Dead or Alive, Schrödinger's Cat Can Be in 2 Boxes at Once

Dead or Alive, Schrödinger's Cat Can Be in 2 Boxes at Once | The virtual life | Scoop.it
A new study with light particles shows that Schrodinger's cat can be alive and dead and in two places at once, new research shows.
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Scientist suggests possible link between primordial black holes and dark matter

Scientist suggests possible link between primordial black holes and dark matter | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Dark matter is a mysterious substance composing most of the material universe, now widely thought to be some form of massive exotic particle. An intriguing alternative view is that dark matter is made of black holes forme
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Sea-level rise has claimed five whole islands in the Pacific: first scientific evidence

Sea-level rise has claimed five whole islands in the Pacific: first scientific evidence | The virtual life | Scoop.it
By Simon Albert, Alistair Grinham, Badin Gibbes, Javier Leon, & John Church | (The Conversation) | - - Sea-level rise, …
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Disturbing New Study Shows The Pacific Ocean May Suffocate In Just 15 Years

Disturbing New Study Shows The Pacific Ocean May Suffocate In Just 15 Years | The virtual life | Scoop.it
The same human activity that is causing the world's oceans to warm, rise, and acidify is also robbing those same oceans of oxygen. Furthermore, the impact of
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BioViva follows controversial anti-aging quest

BioViva follows controversial anti-aging quest | The virtual life | Scoop.it
BioViva founder Elizabeth Parrish subjected herself to experimental anti-aging gene therapy last year, and now a foundation is reporting the first results.
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Better tests for Schrodinger cats

Better tests for Schrodinger cats | The virtual life | Scoop.it
While Bell inequalities have been proven to be an optimal tool for ruling out local realism in quantum experiments, Lucas Clemente and Johannes Kofler from the Theory Division of the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optic
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$100-Million Plan Will Send Probes to the Nearest Star

$100-Million Plan Will Send Probes to the Nearest Star | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Funded by Russian entrepreneur Yuri Milner and with the blessing of Stephen Hawking, Breakthrough Starshot aims to send probes to Alpha Centauri in a generation
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Top Scientists Weigh In On Whether We All Live In A Hologram

Top Scientists Weigh In On Whether We All Live In A Hologram | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Maybe we're just blips on some cosmic computer screen.
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Study of ancient Japanese hunter-gatherers suggests warfare not inherent in human nature

Study of ancient Japanese hunter-gatherers suggests warfare not inherent in human nature | The virtual life | Scoop.it
(Phys.org)—A team of Japanese researchers (and one from the U.K.) has found evidence in the remains of ancient Japanese people that suggests that people are not necessarily predisposed to living a violent existence or eve
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Automated lip-reading invented | KurzweilAI

Automated lip-reading invented | KurzweilAI | The virtual life | Scoop.it
(credit: MGM) New lip-reading technology developed at the University of East Anglia could help in solving crimes and provide communication assistance for
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Dark matter might be made of super-heavy particles almost as big as human cells

Dark matter might be made of super-heavy particles almost as big as human cells | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Research suggests it could one-third the size of human cells.
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'It’s unraveling, every piece of it is unraveling, they’re all in lockstep together'

'It’s unraveling, every piece of it is unraveling, they’re all in lockstep together' | The virtual life | Scoop.it
The record for hottest measured global temperature was set in 2014. That record lasted a whole year, as 2015 was even...
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Two-hundred-terabyte maths proof is largest ever

Two-hundred-terabyte maths proof is largest ever | The virtual life | Scoop.it
A computer cracks the Boolean Pythagorean triples problem — but is it really maths?
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Crawling Chemicals Act Like They Are Alive

Crawling Chemicals Act Like They Are Alive | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Globules move around, ingest others, leave waste—and could hold clues to origins of cells
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They’re Parking the Trains. And the Ships and Planes and Trucks…

They’re Parking the Trains. And the Ships and Planes and Trucks… | The virtual life | Scoop.it
 

It’s a picture that’s worth a thousand choruses of “Don’t Worry, Be Happy. Rea
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Just 40 light years from Earth, three planets might host life forms adapted to infrared worlds

Just 40 light years from Earth, three planets might host life forms adapted to infrared worlds | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Is there life beyond our solar system? If there is, our best bet for finding it may lie in three nearby, Earth-like exoplanets.
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Entanglement Made Simple | Quanta Magazine

Entanglement Made Simple |  Quanta Magazine | The virtual life | Scoop.it
How quantum entanglement connects with the “many worlds” of quantum theory.
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Quantum weirdness may hide an orderly reality after all

Quantum weirdness may hide an orderly reality after all | The virtual life | Scoop.it
A reboot of a classic quantum experiment suggests that photons have a well-defined trajectory, resurrecting a previously dismissed theory
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The Network Behind the Cosmic Web

The Network Behind the Cosmic Web | The virtual life | Scoop.it
The concept of the cosmic web, viewing the Universe as a set of discrete galaxies held together by gravity, is deeply engrained in cosmology. Yet, little is known about the most effective construction and the characteristics of the underlying network. Here we explore and visualize the cosmic web as a network.
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Laborious Cretin's comment, April 15, 8:20 AM
The Sticky Geometry of the Cosmic Web https://youtu.be/wI12X2zczqI
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Scientists say the 'R' in RNA may be abundant in space

Scientists say the 'R' in RNA may be abundant in space | The virtual life | Scoop.it
New research suggests that the sugar ribose - the "R" in RNA - is probably found in comets and asteroids that zip through the solar system and may be more abundant throughout the universe than was previously thought.
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Is the black hole at our galaxy’s centre a quantum computer? – Sabine Hossenfelder | Aeon Essays

Might nature’s bottomless pits actually be ultra-efficient quantum computers? That could explain why data never dies
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Laborious Cretin's comment, March 31, 3:33 PM
Nice article though I would argue parts also. Mixed quantum state is more likely than computation. Decoherence, extreme time and space distortion, programing language, Ect... Not to get into what is it computing things. What is it encrypting the universe or just the black holes information? If so it would still look like gibberish. But I would say a mixed quantum states from one point of view is likely. As far as bottomless infinite. I prefer to see it as a virtual infinity with what black holes show. they have cutoff points and limits and do not keep growing after points and eating more matter. But that's just my perspective. Nice to see others looking at black holes in new ways.
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Researcher links mass extinctions to 'Planet X'

Researcher links mass extinctions to 'Planet X' | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Periodic mass extinctions on Earth, as indicated in the global fossil record, could be linked to a suspected ninth planet, according to research published by a faculty member of the University of Arkansas Department of Mathematica
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Here's How We Could Reach Mars In Just 30 Minutes

Here's How We Could Reach Mars In Just 30 Minutes | The virtual life | Scoop.it
Faster forms of spacecraft propulsion have been a dream for decades, but now one researcher thinks he has a solid idea. Known as directed energy propulsion, it would involve firing a laser at a tiny spacecraft to speed it up to a significant fraction of the speed of light, potentially allowing for missions to Mars in less than an hour, rather than the months it takes at the moment.
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Gravitational waves found in 1.3 billion year old black hole collision — NOVA Next | PBS

Gravitational waves found in 1.3 billion year old black hole collision — NOVA Next | PBS | The virtual life | Scoop.it
The LIGO observatory has found ripples in spacetime predicted by Einstein almost exactly 100 years ago.
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