Red dwarf Proxima Centauri is considered to be the second closest to Earth a star after the Sun. It refers to the star system of alpha Centauri, and the distance to our planet is equal to 4.2 light years. In 2016, astronomers became aware that around that star a planet circling Proxima Centauri b, the size of which is comparable to the Earth. Now, scientists have been suggested that next to it is the second planet of the larger size and extremely low temperature.
At the moment researchers have no direct evidence of its existence, the HARPS instrument telescope Observatory La Silla in Chile saying that. Conclusions about the existence of the planet was made on the basis of fluctuations Proxima Centauri, which suggests that orbited two objects. The strength of the fluctuations reveals the measurements and period of the trajectory.
Taking into account all the collected data, scientists have suggested that the mass of a second planet exceeds the earth in six different times. In contrast to the planet Proxima Centauri b, the second object is far beyond the habitable zone of the star, at a distance of about 1.5 astronomical units. The temperature on its surface is equal to -234 degrees Celsius, but only if we assume that it is a black body being heated only by the star.
At the moment, the researchers intend to find more evidence of the existence of the second planet. If they can prove it, then with high probability it will be called Proxima c and the status of super-earths.
What do you think about the new discoveries of astronomers? Share your opinion in the comments or in our Telegram chat.