I’m taking a little break alongside the Atlantic but can’t leave exoplanets et al completely behind.
Water worlds are inferred, or known, to be present and perhaps not uncommon in the galaxy. And there is reason to conclude that they may have much more water than Earth. Although 70.8% of all Earth’s surface is covered in water, H2O accounts for just some 0.05% of Earth’s mass.
Some animations and illustrations of what these aquaworlds might look like:
Depiction of a world completely covered with ocean. (NASA Kepler Mission/Dana Berry)
Artist rendering of TRAPPIST-1f in the seven-exoplanet Trappist-1 system in constellation Aquarius. The color comes from orbiting a red dwarf star. With added fisherman. (NASA)
Marc Kaufman is the author of two books about space: "Mars Up Close: Inside the Curiosity Mission” and “First Contact: Scientific Breakthroughs in the Search for Life Beyond Earth.” He is also an experienced journalist, having spent three decades at The Washington Post and The Philadelphia Inquirer. While the “Many Worlds” column is supported and informed by NASA’s Astrobiology Program, any opinions expressed are the author’s alone.
This blog is being hosted by Knowinnovation Inc. and is supported by the Lunar and Planetary Institute (LPI). LPI is operated by the Universities Space Research Association (USRA) under a cooperative agreement with NASA. The purpose of this blog is to communicate the work of the Nexus for Exoplanet Systems Science (NExSS). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed on this blog or its comments are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of NASA.