WASHINGTON: Earth has met its match.
Astronomers have discovered a new planet in a so-called "Goldilocks zone" -- an area that's not too hot and not too cold.
Just right for life, in other words.
The planet is a rarity, existing in what appear to be the conditions required to sustain plants and human life. Its surface temperatures likely range from 160 degrees to 25 degrees below zero, and it orbits the star Gliese 581 -- its sun -- every 37 days.
The planet is roughly three times the size of Earth and about 20 light years away.
In universal terms, that's the same neighborhood.
The discovery is making scientists think habitable planets might not be as rare as they once thought.