Earth's galactic neighborhood sure is crowded

Illustration for article titled Earths galactic neighborhood sure is crowded

Via XKCD comes this lovely chart of Earth's newly-discovered exoplanetary neighbors. Extrapolated from the latest batch of Kepler data, the diagram depicts the number and sizes of planets thought to exist in the habitable zones of stars within 60 light years of Earth. Is it just me, or does it feel a little cramped in here all of a sudden?


Planets orbiting Sun-like stars are labeled in shades of red, while those orbiting stars unlike ours are labeled in shades of grey. The designation is significant, as the most recent Kepler data suggests 22% of Sun-like stars in the Milky Way are orbited by potentially habitable, Earth-sized worlds. And remember, that's just Earth-sized worlds, meaning the number of potentially habitable worlds (regardless of their size) within the habitable zones of these Sun-like stars is actually even higher. We're talking billions of potentially habitable planets, people. And don't even get us started on habitable moons.


[Via XKCD]

Share This Story

Get our newsletter


So Earth is that awkward kid in public school that no one wanted to hang out with?