Part-WAS-Was8890201-1-1-0NASA is closer than ever to finding a twin for the Earth, astronomers said Tuesday, announcing the discovery of eight new planets that circle in the habitable zones of their stars. Two of the eight are the most Earth-like of any known planets found so far outside our solar system, astronomers told the 225th meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Seattle, Washington. The pair are likely to have hard, rocky surfaces in addition to being an orbiting distance from their stars that is neither too hot nor too cold for water and possibly life to exist, astronomers said. The discovery doubles the number of known planets that are close in size to the Earth and believed to be in the so-called “Goldilocks zone” of the stars they orbit. “We are now closer than we have ever been to finding a twin for the Earth around another star,” said Fergal Mullally of the Kepler Science Office. More