Proxima Centauri is a smaller, cooler star than our sun. But the new planet, Proxima b, orbits about eight times closer to its star than Mercury does to the sun, the team that led the discovery said in an Reddit Ask Me Anything session. That keeps it warm in a cold solar system.
It’s about 1.3 times more massive than Earth, and it’s believed to only expose one side of its surface to the light (kind of like how on Earth we only ever see one side of the moon). A year on Proxima b is about 11.2 days long. If you were standing on Proxima b, you’d be basked in red light from the star. The Atlantic reports that if there were plant life on the planet, it would probably be crimson-colored to best absorb the rays.
Above, you can see just how close Proxima b is to its star, in the narrow band of green that represents the area where life could, hypothetically, live.
@ 4 1/2 Light Years, there's a chance we could check it out. Pretty cool don't you think? :)
A pale Red Dot