An exoplanet or extra-solar planet is a term coined by astronomers to refer to a planet that orbits a star outside our solar system. We have compiled a list of habitable and potentially habitable exoplanets to introduce you to the possibilities of life beyond planet Earth, and even more fascinatingly, life beyond our solar system.
This list contains the top 10 potentially habitable extra-solar planets, and it is based on the estimations and data on planetary habitability revealed by the Habitable Exoplanets Catalog (HEC), which is published under the supervision of the Planetary Habitability Laboratory of the University of Puerto Rico, Arecibo. Statistics and estimations from the NASA Exoplanet Archive have also been incorporated.
Here, take a look at the top 10 potentially habitable exoplanets:
Kepler-442b’s status has been confirmed as an exoplanet that has almost the same size as Earth, and it happens to be almost the same size as Earth. The terrain is expected to be rocky, and Kepler-442b orbits inside the habitable region of the K-type-main-sequence star Kepler-442, which is located around 1120 light years away from our planet. The K-type-main-sequence stars tend to be much smaller as compared to the sun, and they also live longer, carving out a main sequence of around 15 to 30 billion years as opposed to the 10 billion years estimated for the sun.
Kepler-22b orbits around Kepler-22 and maintains an average distance of 15% less than the distance between the Sun and the Earth, however, the light radiating by Kepler-22 happens to be 25% less powerful than the luminosity of the Sun.
Given a suitable combination of a low stellar luminosity and a short average distance from its host star, the surface temperature and distance of Keper-22b are considered sufficiently habitable. Experts believe that the surface of Kepler-22b is not exposed to severe temperatures of greenhouse heating.