A recent article published for ‘The Astronomical Journal’ by a team of astronomers has shed light on what was already considered the most Earth-like planet closest to us found to date. Thanks to the Hubble Space Telescope, this world called LTT 1445 Ac (which had already been observed in 2022) has been able to be analyzed in more detail and it has been confirmed that its diameter is almost like the earth’s. Although there is not very good news if we think about the possibility of living there, because it seems that life on this exoplanet could not make its way due to its temperature…
The exoplanet LTT 1445 Ac, the Earth-like world that is only 22 light years away
The LTT 1445 Ac is a rocky exoplanet which was discovered last year by NASA with the TESS satellite and which a priori does not have large oceans like TOI-733b. However, the limited resolution of its instruments prevented the team of astronomers who found it from clearly determining some of its properties. Now, with the technology from the popular and advanced HubbleWe already have many more data about this little world.
Specifically, it is known that the LTT 1445 Ac rotates like we do around a star called LTT 1445A in an orbital period of 3.12 days, but it does so within a ‘trinary’ systemwhich means that their system is composed of three stars that orbit each other, something that is actually infrequent. “Planets in transit are interesting because we can characterize their atmospheres through spectroscopy“, not only with Hubble but also with the James Webb Space Telescope.”has explained Emily Passof the Harvard & Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, lead author of the study. “Our measurement is important because it tells us that it is probably a very close terrestrial planet”.
The LTT 1445 Ac system is located in the constellation of Eridanus and it’s just 22 light years away from our home (a little closer than the planet Wolf 1069b at 31 light years), and according to observations made with Hubble, the exoplanet LTT 1445 Ac would have a size only 1.07 times larger than that of Earth.
The size of the LTT 1445 Ac is only 1.07 times larger than that of the Earth, so its surface gravity should be very similar ours.
This means that this rocky world should have a very similar surface gravity to that of our planet, although with an important difference: its temperature. According to calculations, the atmosphere of LTT 1445 Ac It will be about 260 degrees Celsius hotso life as we know it it will be impossible to develop on its surface.
Nevertheless, there is no need to be disappointed with this data. And the team of astronomers considers that the fact that LTT 1445 Ac is so similar to the Earth in diameter is a ideal opportunity for study its atmosphere and try to better understand how worlds that are similar to Earth form and evolve in systems that have architectures so different from ours.
“We hope to make later observations that allow us better understand diversity of planets around other stars”Emily Pass said enthusiastically.