Again and again, astronomers proudly present exoplanets that would be suitable for life as we know it – i.e. made of solid rock and illuminated by their stars in such a way that water exists on their surface in a liquid state. But is our home planet really ideal for the development of life? After all, when the sun was still young and shone with a third less power, it was still quite cold here until CO2 finally created a greenhouse effect.
A study under the direction of the scientist Dirk Schulze Makuch of the Washington State University and the Technical University of Berlin, which was published recently in the magazine Astrobiology, therefore now describes characteristics of potential “overhabitable” planets, to which also those belong, that are older, somewhat larger, somewhat warmer and possibly more humid than Earth. Life could also more easily flourish on planets orbiting slower changing stars with longer lifetimes than our Sun.