RICHARD BIZLEY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY RICHARD BIZLEY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Habitable alien planet, artwork. This Earth-like planet is located near an open star cluster (left). A planet's orbit and its size have to fit within a narrow range for it to have a surface temperature suitable for liquid water, and for it to retain an atmosphere. An open star cluster, found within a galaxy, is a loose grouping of stars. The stars tend to be young, sometimes forming from the same nebula, but can be of any age. Over time, due to the gravitational forces exerted by other stars in the galaxy, the stars of an open star cluster will drift apart. These are large, young stars that are hot and blue in colour.
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