Earth-like planets may be common. How wet or dry they are seems to depend a lot on the characteristics of the orbits of gas giant planets in the same system:
"The more eccentric giant planet orbits result in drier terrestrial planets," Raymond said. "Conversely, more circular giant planet orbits mean wetter terrestrial planets."
In the case of our solar system, Jupiter's orbit is slightly elliptical, which could explain why Earth is 80 percent covered by oceans rather than being bone dry or completely covered in water miles deep.
The findings are significant because of the discovery in recent years of a large number of giant planets such as Jupiter and Saturn orbiting other suns. The presence, and orbits, of those planets can be inferred from their gravitational interaction with their parent stars and their affect on light from those stars as seen from Earth.
I think I am liking Firebird. It is now my default browser. Tabbed browsing is nice. But you have to manually edit the config file to make animated gifs stop after one iteration.
== kasetsu == hypothesis
|The left radical is 'person' (人), right radical is 'oppose' (反). Henshall suggests as a mnemonic: 'Person opposed to even temporary falsehood.'|