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A supermassive black hole with millions to billions times the mass of our sun is seen in an undated NASA artist's concept illustration.[Photo/REUTERS]

After completing its first year of observations in the southern sky, NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) has spotted some intriguing new exoplanets only 31 light-years away from Earth.

美国宇航局的过境系外行星测量卫星(TESS)在完成对南半球天空的第一年观测后,发现了几颗距离地球仅31光年的有趣的新系外行星。

GJ 357 d, a super-Earth that is 6.1 times the Earth's mass, is the most intriguing because it orbits the star at a distance where the temperature might be just right to support liquid water on the surface. "超级地球"GJ 357 d的质量是地球的6.1倍,最令研究人员感兴趣,因为它围绕恒星运行的距离使其表面的温度可能刚好适宜液态水的存在。

The researchers don't know if the super-Earth is rocky like our own planet, but it orbits the star every 55.7 days and has a temperature of negative 64 degrees Fahrenheit. An atmosphere could cause it to be warmer. 研究人员尚不清楚这颗"超级地球"是否和地球一样属于岩质行星,但它的公转周期为55.7天,温度为华氏零下64度。如果行星上有大气层,温度会更高。

This is humanity's first nearby super-Earth that could harbor life - uncovered with help from TESS. 这是人类在TESS的帮助下发现的第一颗可能存在生命的近距离"超级地球"。

With a thick atmosphere, the planet GJ 357 d could maintain liquid water on its surface like Earth and we could pick out signs of life with upcoming telescopes soon to be online.如果存在稠密的大气层,行星GJ 357 d可能像地球一样表面可留存液态水,我们或许可以通过很快即将上线的望远镜找到生命的迹象。

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