jupiter like planet
An artist's impression showing a newly discovered planet similar to Jupiter orbiting the star, HIP 11915ESO/M. Kornmesser

Astronomers have discovered a planet similar to Jupiter in another solar system which could take them one step closer to finding a planetary system that mirrors our own.

It has been theorised that the gas giant played a key role in the formation of our solar system thanks to its gravitational influence.

A team, led by experts from Brazil, has been searching for Sun-like stars which could hold the key to finding a solar system similar to ours. They have found a planet similar in mass to Jupiter, and almost exactly the same distance from its Sun-like star, HIP 11915.

Many similar Jupiter-like planets orbiting at a similar distance to their Sun have been found, but this is the most accurate representative of a Jupiter-Sun relationship as of yet, according to the paper published in Astronomy & Astrophysics.

It was discovered using the planet-hunting instrument HARPS which was mounted atop of the ESO 3.6m telescope at the La Silla Observatory in Chile.

Jorge Melendez, of the Universidade de São Paulo, leader of the team and co-author of the paper, said: "The quest for an Earth 2.0, and for a complete Solar System 2.0, is one of the most exciting endeavours in astronomy. We are thrilled to be part of this cutting-edge research, made possible by the observational facilities provided by ESO."

Megan Bedell, from the University of Chicago and lead author of the paper, added: "After two decades of hunting for exoplanets, we are finally beginning to see long-period gas giant planets similar to those in our own solar system thanks to the long-term stability of planet-hunting instruments like HARPS. This discovery is, in every respect, an exciting sign that other solar systems may be out there waiting to be discovered."

Further research will be conducted to confirm the group's findings.