Four years earlier, Proxima b was first discovered using the spectrograph HARPS. Four years later, with the availability of a new generation spectrograph, ESPRESSO, scientists had the chance to study a bit more about the exoplanet. ESPRESSO is said to be three times more precise than HARPS
The planet revolves around Proxima Centauri, another star located 4.2 light years away from the sun. it was known that the planet completed its year in 11.2 days, and even if it was located in such a close orbit, the amount of energy it received from its star was nearly as much as Earth receives from the Sun. However, located this near, Proxima b receives harmful concentrations of X-rays from Proxima Centauri and scientists wonder if this exoplanet has an atmosphere that can protect it from these harmful radiations. Other than that, it is known that Proxima b has 1.17 times more mass than Earth. This is an interesting new discovery made using ESPRESSO, since previously it was known that it is 1.3 times the mass of the sun.
RISTRETTO, the successor to ESSPRESSO, is already under work and scientists look forward to making even more astonishing discoveries regarding this exoplanet in the future. If all other predictions made regarding Proxima b are proved to be true, scientists believe they might find extraterrestrial life on this Earth look-alike.