It’s been just revealed something that not many expected about exoplanets. If you believed that these are rare in the Universe, you were wrong.
It seems that a recent study highlights that they are pretty common in the Universe.
This was reported in a new UCLA study, as Fox News reveals.
Analyzing the geochemistry of planets outside the solar system
Scientists led by Alexandra Doyle at the University of California, LA (UCLA) a graduate student of geochemistry and astrochemistry revealed a brand new method to analyze the geochemistry of planets outside the solar system.
This new study was published in the journal Science this week.
“We have just raised the probability that many rocky planets are like the Earth, and there’s a very large number of rocky planets in the universe,” co-author Edward Young said in a statement.
Fox News also revealed that Doyle analyzed the elements in rocks that came from asteroids, or rocky planet fragments, orbiting six white dwarf stars.
“Observing a white dwarf is like doing an autopsy on the contents of what it has gobbled in its solar system,” she stated.
It’s been also reported that the experts studied the six most common elements in rock: iron, oxygen, silicon, magnesium, calcium, and aluminum.
Comparison with rocks from Earth and Mars
Doyle said that these are very similar – referring to the rocks they analyzed when compared to rocks from Earth and Mars.
“They are Earth-like and Mars-like in terms of their oxidized iron. We’re finding that rocks are rocks everywhere, with very similar geophysics and geochemistry,” she said.
Experts reportedly used various calculations and formulas since they were not able to study the actual rocks from these white dwarfs.
“If extraterrestrial rocks have a similar quantity of oxidation as the Earth has, then you can conclude the planet has similar plate tectonics and similar potential for magnetic fields as the Earth, which are widely believed to be key ingredients for life,” according to co-author Hilke Schlichting.