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We have almost 1.75 billion years to enjoy living conditions on Earth as the scientists have discovered that the habitable conditions on the planet will persist for the said period.
According to a new study conducted by astrobiologists at the University of East Anglia (UEA), after this point, our planet will be in the ‘hot zone’ of the Sun, with temperatures so high that the seas would evaporate, causing a catastrophic and terminal extinction event for all life.
The researchers have come to the conclusion after using recently discovered planets outside our solar system (exoplanets) as examples. They investigated the potential for these planets to host life.
“We used the ‘habitable zone’ concept to make these estimates – this is the distance from a planet’s star at which temperatures are conducive to having liquid water on the surface,” said Andrew Rushby, from University of East Anglia (UEA)’s school of Environmental Sciences.
The researcher used stellar evolution models to estimate the end of a planet’s habitable lifetime by determining when it will no longer be in the habitable zone. They estimate that Earth will cease to be habitable somewhere between 1.75 and 3.25 billion years from now.
“After this point, Earth will be in the ‘hot zone’ of the Sun, with temperatures so high that the seas would evaporate. We would see a catastrophic and terminal extinction event for all life,” said Rushby.
The findings are published in the journal Astrobiology.