What is a Super Earth? Is it Habitable? Are Aliens present in Super Earth?

July 01, 2018
The existence of aliens on an Earth-like planet has been the topic of debate and discussion for many decades. Pessimists argue that since definite proof of life on other planets has not been found, aliens don’t exist. Optimists, on the other hand, believe that they do,based on the findings of space which point to their existence. The common notion between scientists is that aliens may require an environment like the one humans have- Earth-like planetary composition, water, atmosphere etc. and a super earth fulfils these conditions.
Super Earth

Technically, super earths are planets whose mass is more than earth and less than Uranus and Neptune, each having 15 and 17 times of mass as that of earth. However, commonly, only those exoplanets having habitable conditions are referred to as Super Earth if they satisfy the condition of mass. Not all of them are habitable but most are, with water and atmosphere present due to their extreme gravitational pull resulting from their mass.

The most important factor in determining habitability is their structure- is the planet rocky like earth or gaseous like Uranus? Generally, if the radius of the planet is less than 1.7 times as that of earth, it is assumed that the planet is rocky. And only on those planets can human-like beings can survive. The planet also has to be within the habitable zone of its star, i.e. where liquid water can be formed. 
Some confirmed Super Earths

The presence of aliens on these planets will require much more research, research that is possible only with equipment that will be developed in the future. With the date that is already present, scientists have made some assumptions. If aliens exist, they may be more evolved than humans and thus might have invented various ways of spaceflight. Scientists have said in a new study that even if they have ways to explore space, the high gravitational pull of these super earths would render the advanced civilisations unable to escape their atmosphere. To launch rocket-like vehicles would require velocity as much as 2.4 times greater than what is required for a rocket to launch from earth. Another hindrance would be caused by the fact that higher velocity would require more fuel which would make the aircraft heavier. Only nuclear pulse propulsion would enable the aircraft to propel itself in space. But a nuclear fusion in the planet would cause so much harm to it that further civilisation may not be possible. 

All this being said, the existence of aliens is a rather foggy arena. At the moment, scientists are waiting for the James Webb Space Telescope, successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, to be launched in 2020 which would make further space exploration possible and might even prove that aliens exist.

Post Written By - Bahana Saikia

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