We're finding (potentially) habitable exoplanets more and more frequently, to the point where spotting another one is just not news unless it has two suns or something. New data from the Kepler space telescope may make further exoplanet discoveries even less exciting, now that we can guess just how many of them might be out there: it's lots.
We're been looking for planets around other stars that are as like Earth as possible, but new simulations show that habitable exoplanets may be much more like Arrakis (or Mars) than Earth.
So much for a galaxy "far far away." Astronomers have made some detailed measurements of a planet in a binary star system some 40 light years from here, and it looks like it just might be habitable, with one red sun and one orange sun. Sounds familiar.
French scientists have confirmed with computer models that Gliese 581d, a planet orbiting a red dwarf star about 20 light years from here, has a stable atmosphere, comfortable temperatures, and a surface covered in liquid water. It's the first planet orbiting another star that could definitely support life, and it's basically next door.