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NASA's Exoplanet Announcement Prompts Ridiculous Alien Conspiracy Theories

First Posted: Feb 23, 2017 03:00 AM EST
TRAPPIST-1
NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope just discovered a seven-exoplanet system.
(Photo : NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory/YouTube screenshot)

Conspiracy theorists have made their wildest assumptions after NASA tweeted a mysterious announcement. Although the American space agency was referring to the newly discovered exoplanets, some people still have ridiculously braced themselves for a much-awaited alien update.

News.com.au reported that people have made a great alien deal about NASA's Twitter announcement on Feb. 22. The space agency posted a link to an article about a "Discovery Beyond Our Solar System," and alien fans have immediately gone berserk.

"New discovery! We're announcing findings on planets orbiting stars other than our sun today," NASA tweeted.

"This NASA announcement better be aliens," one fan tweeted. "Will be well gutted if nasa's announcement tomorrow isn't about aliens," another one posted.

In fact, the Daily Express even made a headline about it: "Has Nasa found ALIENS? Space agency to announce 'discovery beyond our solar system."

Too bad the important announcement was not anything about getting in touch with aliens. "Pssst! We've got exciting news from beyond our solar system! Spoiler: NOT aliens," NASA tweeted moments after.

The space agency announced that the Spitzer Space Telescope just discovered a seven-exoplanet system called TRAPPIST-1. Named after the Transiting Planets and Planetesimals Small Telescope (TRAPPIST) in Chile, the team has found a total of seven Earth-size planets orbiting a nearby ultra-cool dwarf star.

The exoplanet system is located about 40 lightyears (235 trillion miles) from Earth, within the constellation Aquarius. All of the planets reportedly have a rocky surface and could potentially have liquid water. Furthermore, three of these exoplanets are orbiting around the star's habitable zone.

The TRAPPIST first discovered three of these exoplanets in May 2016. Astronomers are celebrating to have found this incredible star system, which they could further observe and explore later on.

Who knows? Among these TRAPPIST-1 exoplanets could just be the next Earth.

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