The result is "fantastic news," said Franck Selsis, an astrophysicist at the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Bordeaux in France.
But Selsis cautions that being in the all-important "habitability zone" where temperatures are right for life as we know it is "necessary, but certainly not sufficient." The planet could have formed without any water.
A trajectory and light-curve analysis by Franck Selsis
(Astronomical Research Center in Lyon, France) and three colleagues in the June 2nd Nature demonstrates that the streak was probably not the Viking Orbiter 2 but a meteor, likely a tiny fragment of Comet Wiseman-Skiff.