Aliens could be hiding in dark spots just outside our solar system to avoid detection, utilising ‘terminator zones‘ to their advantage, according to experts.

Planets outside our solar system orbit different stars, meaning one side of their face is visible but the other is in constant darkness – to us at least.

Astronomers have discovered these planets have a band around them which could harbour water, a key ingredient for life, as the Daily Star reports.

But this band is also known as the terminator zone, as it divides between the light and dark sides, and experts believe this ‘sweet spot’, which is neither too hot nor cold, could be utilised by extraterrestrial life.

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Dr Ana Lobo, of the University of California, said: “The dayside can be scorching hot, well beyond habitability, and the night side is going to be freezing, potentially covered in ice.

“You could have large glaciers on the night side. You want a planet that’s in the sweet spot of just the right temperature for having liquid water.

“We are trying to draw attention to more water-limited planets which despite not having widespread oceans could have lakes or other smaller bodies of liquid water and these climates could actually be very promising.

“By exploring these exotic climate states we increase our chances of finding and properly identifying a habitable planet in the near future’.”

In a study published in The Astrophysical Journal researchers set out to find out whether exoplanets could sustain life.

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They simulated their climate analysing their varying temperatures, wind patterns and radiation exposure.

Using software normally deployed to model Earth’s climate they found a ‘just right’ zone around the terminator of these exoplanets which could hold liquid water enabling the existence of life.

This was only the case when there was a lot of land on the planet – if it was largely covered by ocean the water on the dayside would evaporate and cover the planet in vapour.

That would change the temperature of the terminator zone and make it no longer habitable.

Study co-author Dr Aomawa Shields said: “Ana has shown if there’s a lot of land on the planet, the scenario we call ‘terminator habitability’ can exist a lot more easily.