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‘Iceball’ Planet Discovered by NASA

An+artist%27s+rendition+of+OGLE-2016-BLG-1195Lb.
An artist's rendition of OGLE-2016-BLG-1195Lb.

An artist's rendition of OGLE-2016-BLG-1195Lb.

image credited to jpl.nasa.gov

image credited to jpl.nasa.gov

An artist's rendition of OGLE-2016-BLG-1195Lb.

Ajooni G., Writer

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NASA scientists have found a new planet that may add to scientists’ understanding of the types of planetary systems that exist beyond our solar system. The planet – OGLE-2016-BLG-1195lb – has roughly the same mass as Earth and is orbiting its star at the same distance that we orbit our sun. However, since the star is so faint, scientists have concluded that the ‘iceball’ planet is far too cold to harbor any life forms. The new planet was found through a method called microlensing. “This ‘iceball’ planet is the lowest-mass planet ever found through microlensing,” Yossi Shvartzvald, a NASA postdoctoral fellow based at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and lead author of the study, said in a statement, according to RDmag.

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‘Iceball’ Planet Discovered by NASA