“Scientists” have found a new planet and hope they will find life there. I write “scientists”, because most of what astronomers do has absolutely nothing to do with science whatsoever. And they know it. Whatever happens outside our solar system is too far away to say anything serious. It’s all a matter of speculating, dreaming, assuming, but it can never be based on facts. The main problem with all these statements from astronomers is that they assume that outside our solar system everything is the same as a bit closer to home. And that’s a pretty absurd assumption. Why would there be things like carbon, water or iron at 10 lightyears away from us? It’s a lot more likely that so far away things are so different that we humans cannot remotely imagine it.
This new planet (which basically can be anything and everything, but likely not a planet at all) is at 500 light years away. A light year is the distance that light travels in a vacuum during one year. (That assumes that light is the same outside of our solar system, but you can’t know that for sure.) That means that one light year is 9 460 730 472 580 km. None of us can imagine that. It’s just a meaningless number. Fun to play with for astronomers and mathematicians, but for the rest useless. Let alone that you do this 500 times. I won’t ask how these people actually know that this planet is that far away. They don’t know. They just make wild guesses and hope that people are impressed.
For all these same reasons nobody has any idea what stars are (“twinkle, twinkle little star, how I wonder what you are” will forever be true). Let alone that we could know that something that seems to orbit around that star would be a planet. All these theories are based on the assumption that out there everything is the same as it’s here. And that’s very unlikely. And we will never know, because nobody can travel there to take some photos.
All these assumptions are focused on the idea that there might be life somewhere else in the universe and astronomers want to find it. The chances they find that are zero. Not because there absolutely won’t be any life outside our universe. I would say that that’s quite well possible. But because astronomers are looking for life that somehow resembles life on earth. At least life that they can imagine and visualize. But that is extremely unlikely. If extraterrestial life would show up on earth we most probably wouldn’t even be aware of it, let alone we would recognize it as such. Do these people really think that somewhere a hundred light years away there will be life like we have on earth?
Stars are nice to look at and we should do that a lot more. They are great for navigation too and have been used for that for as long as people have travelled. But don’t say that this has anything to do with science. It’s a hobby and for many people a nice hobby. But nothing more than that.