Earth-Like Exoplanets

NASA have announced the discovery of seven Earth-like planets around the dwarf star, Trappist-1, 39 light years away from Earth. Three of these exoplanets lie within the ‘Goldilocks’ Zone, where it is not too hot or too cold for liquid water, thus they might potentially be a location for searching for alien life.



Venus, despite being further away from the Sun than Mercury, is actually the hottest planet in the Solar System. This is due to its thick atmosphere of mainly carbon dioxide (96%) causing a runaway greenhouse effect! Thus surface temperatures average 462C! Its atmospheric pressure is 92 times greater than the Earth’s so if you could somehow survive the intense heat, you would be crushed! To make things worse, Venus also has clouds of sulphuric acid! Put simply, Venus would not be nice to visit!  Oddly, it is the only planet to spin on its axis in a clockwise direction!

Science thought for the day!

Most heavy elements (atoms) in the universe were formed in the centre of stars (stellar nucleosynthesis) from hydrogen and helium. That means that the carbon in your body, the iron in your blood and the calcium in your teeth and bones are made from the remains of stars which went supernova (exploded) billions of years ago!!!!!

Famous Scientists!

Alfred Russel Wallace

Alfred Russel Wallace

I am interested in learning about the history of science, in particular the great scientists past and present who have helped shape our understanding of the world around us. Do you have a favourite famous scientist? What did they discover?

If you want a starting point, see if you can find out who Alfred Russel Wallace was!

As a second starting challenge, can anyone find out which famous scientist said:

‘If I have seen further than others, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants!’

Good luck!