NASA sees distant planets that seem ideal for life

Associated Press + More

By SETH BORENSTEIN, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — NASA's planet-hunting telescope has discovered two planets that seem like places for some sort of life to flourish. They are just the right size and in just the right place near their star.

William Borucki (Boh-ROO'-kee), the chief scientist for NASA's Kepler (KEH'-plur) telescope, says the distant duo are the best candidates for habitable planets that astronomers have found. Past planets seen orbiting other stars are too big, too hot or too cold.

The planets are circling the same star and are slightly wider than Earth. However, they are not too big so they are solid, not balls of gas. One planet is a bit toasty and the other is a bit nippy.

The discoveries were announced Thursday in the journal Science.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.