Astronomers have discovered a fifth planet orbiting the star 55 Cancri, making it the record-holder outside of good ol' Sol for number of confirmed planets orbiting one star. Interestingly, it's only 41 light-years away in the constellation Cancer, so we might be able to meet its denizens one day *g*
Here's an artist's representation of the newest find:Click the image to see the story.MSNBC is reporting the story
from the angle that this new planet orbits in the habitable zone or, as they say, "the 'Goldilocks zone' - a place that's not too hot, not too cold, but just right for the existence of liquid water and conceivably life." Unfortunately for life, 55 Cancri (aka Rho Cancri) is a binary system, with a yellow dwarf similar to our Sun and a red dwarf. The two stars are separated by over 1000 AUs, or 1/63rd
of a light-year.
Cool beans! Thanks to scarlettina
for the tip.