Features Monday, January 19, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute | January 11, 2015 | 02.20 pm IST NASA has released three exoplanet posters in order to stir the public's curiosity about exoplanets discovered by the Kepler space telescope. The three posters - created by Joby Harris and David Delgado, visual strategists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California in the US - contain artistic impressions of these alien worlds, reported Space.com. One of the posters depicts Kepler 186f, a planet sometimes referred to as the 'Earth's cousin', which is larger than the Earth, and circles a star smaller and dimmer than the Sun. Kepler-186f is the first Earth-size planet discovered in the potentially 'habitable zone' around another star, where liquid water could exist on the planet's surface. Its star is much cooler and redder than our Sun. If plant life does exist on a planet like Kepler-186f, its photosynthesis could have been influenced by the star's red-wavelength photons, making for a color palette that's very different than the greens on Earth. This discovery was made by Kepler, NASA's planet hunting telescope. Interestingly, the planet is shown to be covered with red grass. "If plant life does exist on a planet like Kepler 186f, its photosynthesis could have been influenced by the star's red-wavelength photons, making for a colour palette very different than the greens on the Earth," the poster's planet description reads. Another poster shows a skydiver flying high above the super-Earth HD 40307g, an exoplanet that is eight times more massive than Earth. "Prospects for life on this unusual world aren't good as it has a temperature similar to dry ice," the NASA poster said. The third poster brings us Kepler-16b, an exoplanet which orbits a gravitationally bound pair of stars. That would mean any object on the surface, including a visiting space tourist, would cast two shadows. Like Luke Skywalker's planet "Tatooine" in Star Wars, Kepler-16b orbits a pair of stars. Depicted here as a terrestrial planet, Kepler-16b might also be a gas giant like Saturn. Prospects for life on this unusual world aren't good, as it has a temperature similar to that of dry ice. But the discovery indicates that the movie's iconic double-sunset is anything but science fiction," reads the poster's description. Tweet Follow @thenewsminute

Show us some love! Support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.