White Dwarf Surprise

White Dwarf Surprise

This variable white dwarf pulsates as expected, but it also experiences very bright outbursts. Today’s paper takes us through the discovery and verification of the second pulsating white dwarf with outbursts, and speculates how the pulsations and outbursts may be linked.

Have we really found Earth 2.0?

Have we really found Earth 2.0?

Last month Nasa announced, in what seems like a roughly annual event, the discovery of “Earth 2.0″. Described as a “Bigger, Older Cousin to Earth”, Kepler 452b is the first small planet (defined here as less than twice the radius of the Earth) to be in a roughly one year orbit around a Sun-like star.

But is it otherwise that similar to the Earth? Is it potentially habitable? To try and answer that, let’s look at the discovery paper.