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Extrasolar Planet HD 85512

The exoplanet known as HD 85512 falls into the class of a super-Earths and has been proposed as a likely candidate for being in a habitable zone.

The star HD 85512 is about 36.3 light years from Earth, its mass is about two-thirds that of our Sun ($M=0.69 \ M_{\odot}$), and its size is about the same as our Sun. The planet itself has a mass of about 3.6 Earth masses, and a maximum star-planet distance (semimajor axis) of about 26% of the Earth-Sun distance (0.26 astronomical units (AU)). The orbital period is 58.4 Earth days. The planet's radius is unknown, and consequently, so is its composition.

In July 2012 HD 85512 was listed as one of top 5 potentially habitable exoplanets by the Planetary Habitability Laboratory (PHL). However, given the caveats discussed in the article How many habitable planets have been found?, and the unkown physical parameters of HD 85512, such propositions must be regarded as tentative. In a paper by Anglada-Escudeé et al. (2012), the authors state:

Still, the ultimate water supporting capability of this candidate depends on properties that are unknown such as its albedo, atmospheric composition and interior dynamics.

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File under: HD 85512; super-Earths, Potential habitable zone exoplanet.

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