NASA’s PlanetQuest website recently released these three retro posters which were passed out at the 225th meeting of the American Astronomical Society. The three posters — created by Joby Harris and David Delgado, visual strategists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California — feature artistic renderings of what it might be like to stand (or fly) on one of a trio of imagination-capturing alien worlds.

Where the Grass is Always Redder on the Other Side
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Kepler-186f is the first Earth-size planet discovered in the potentially ‘habitable zone’ around another star, where liquid water could exist on the planet’s surface. Its star is much cooler and redder than our Sun. If plant life does exist on a planet like Kepler-186f, its photosynthesis could have been influenced by the star’s red-wavelength photons, making for a color palette that’s very different than the greens on Earth. This discovery was made by Kepler, NASA’s planet hunting telescope.

Experience the Gravity of a Super Earth
HD_40307g_20x30

Twice as big in volume as the Earth, HD 40307g straddles the line between “Super-Earth” and “mini-Neptune” and scientists aren’t sure if it has a rocky surface or one that’s buried beneath thick layers of gas and ice. One thing is certain though: at eight time the Earth’s mass, its gravitational pull is much, much stronger.

Relax on Kepler-16b – Where your shadow always has company
Kepler_16b_20x_30

Like Luke Skywalker’s planet “Tatooine” in Star Wars, Kepler-16b orbits a pair of stars. Depicted here as a terrestrial planet, Kepler-16b might also be a gas giant like Saturn. Prospects for life on this unusual world aren’t good, as it has a temperature similar to that of dry ice. But the discovery indicates that the movie’s iconic double-sunset is anything but science fiction.

Posted by: Soderman/SSERVI Staff
Source: NASA JPL

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