Known as "super-Earths" because they're larger than Earth but are thought to be rocky planets like our own, rather than gas giants.
Dr. Jeffers and co-authors also detected an unconfirmed signal with a period of 50 days, which could correspond to a third super-Earth, Lacaille 9352d (Gliese 887d), in a more temperate orbit. They combined data from HARPS with measurements of the star-spanning for about 20 years. Red dwarfs, although smaller and dimmer than our sun, will often emit energetic flashes that can destroy a planet's atmosphere.
An worldwide team of astronomers has detected super-Earths orbiting a nearby star just 11 lightyears away.More news: Google's Phone app will tell you why businesses are calling
The research, which was published in Science, holds a lot of promise, but we don't yet possess the technology to view these Earth-alikes in greater detail.
The researchers say GJ 887 is less active than other red dwarfs, so the newly discovered worlds may be spared from strong stellar winds - outflowing material from the star which can erode a planet's atmosphere. The first is that the red dwarf has very few starspots, unlike our Sun.
Based on their findings, astronomers claim that the outer planets have short orbits of no more than 9.3 and 21.8 days. One of these two is situated just inside what is called the habitable zone, or Goldilocks zone, around the star - not too hot and not too cold, perhaps able to maintain liquid water on the surface and harbour life. A team of astronomers hunting for planets have found two especially intriguing super-earths around a relatively close star Gliese 887. More active stars are prone to risky flares, which could easily destroy a planet's atmosphere.More news: Impossible Foods Partners with Starbucks; Rolls Out New Product
Astronomers have been discovering exoplanets, planets that could be very similar to our Earth. "This means that the newly-discovered planets may retain their atmospheres, or have thicker atmospheres than the Earth, and potentially host life, even though Lacaille 9352 receives more light than the Earth".
Another thing that the researchers found is that Gliese 887's brightness is quite constant, which would make future studies of the super-Earths' atmospheres much easier. The impressive results of this study have caught the attention of NASA, which has declared that the next-generation James Webb Space Telescope will target these interesting planets when it will be released in 2021.
Also known as Gliese 887, GJ 887 and HD 217987, this red dwarf lies in the southern constellation of Piscis Austrinus.More news: Broward County to shut down beaches for Fourth of July weekend
"These planets will provide the best prospects for more detailed studies, including the search for life outside our solar system", said Jeffers. Planets tend to orbit these stars so closely, putting them in range of intense solar flares and radiation.