Hot on Trail of ‘Just Right’ Far-Off Planet

December 12, 2011
Hot on Trail of ‘Just Right’ Far-Off Planet

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — What does Goldilocks want?

At least four times in the last few years, astronomers have announced they have found planets orbiting other stars in the sweet spot known as the habitable zone — not too hot, not too cold — where water and thus perhaps life are possible. In short, a so-called Goldilocks planet fit to be inhabited by the biochemical likes of us.

None of these claims are without controversy, but astronomers who are making discoveries with NASA’s Kepler spacecraft are meeting next week in California to review the first two years of their quest, which seems tantalizingly close to hitting pay dirt.

Read the full New York Times article.

See also: 2011