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Doubts raised about "habitable" exoplanet
Posted: Thu, Oct 14, 2010, 7:09 AM ET (1109 GMT)
Gliese 581g illustration (Lynette Cook) An extrasolar planet with a size and orbit consistent with requirements to support life may not exist at all, astronomers said this week. Astronomers announced the discovery of the planet, Gliese 581g, late last month, with a mass as little as three times that of the Earth and an orbit that could permit the presence of liquid water. However, European astronomers said this week that they could not confirm the presence of the star in their own observations, raising doubts that the planet exists. Astronomers involved in the discovery, though, said they remain confident that Gliese 581g exists based on the combination of observations by observatories in Chile and Hawaii.
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