Astronomy Noteworthy

NASA’s Superb Travel Posters for Exoplanets

NASA is employing an unusual approach to bring awareness to some of the potentially habitable exoplanets out there. Under the moniker Exoplanet Travel Bureau, the renowned space agency presented a set of three posters, modeled after the iconic American travel print style of the 1930s, of three prominent exoplanets.

If you like these posters as much as I do, you can click on the images below or you can download all three directly from NASA/JPL.

Offical NASA caption: Twice as big in volume as the Earth, HD 40307g straddles the line between “Super-Earth” and “mini-Neptune” and scientists aren’t sure if it has a rocky surface or one that’s buried beneath thick layers of gas and ice. One thing is certain though: at eight time the Earth’s mass, its gravitational pull is much, much stronger.
Official NASA Caption: 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.
Official NASA Caption: 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.

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