6 Dec 2011

Earth-like planet discovered

12:47 pm on 6 December 2011

The first Earth-like planet beyond our solar system which could sustain life has been discovered.

Kepler 22-b was identified by NASA, which says it closely resembles Earth in size and orbit and could carry water in liquid form.

The planet lies about 600 light-years away and is about 2.4 times the size of Earth. It has a temperature of about 22C and its year takes about 290 days.

However, the BBC reports the astronomers do not yet know if Kepler 22-b is made mostly of rock, gas or liquid.