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Thursday, May 12, 2016

Kepler: 1284 and Counting

Kepler's 2009 Launch  (Public Domain)
Never mind the magic numbers of delegates that are needed to  clinch presidential nominations; there’s even more magic to be had beyond our solar system.

The latest NASA tally of planets tops out at 1284, “more than doubling the number of known Kepler exoplanets.”  The Kepler Space Telescope was originally launched in 2009.  In 2014, successor K2 joined the search for “Earth-size planets in areas that could potentially support life.”

Whereas the first Kepler has remained “fixed on one unchanging portion of the sky," K2 is able to view “a new portion of the sky every 80 days.”  This makes the discovery of alien life that much more possible.   


Copyright May 12, 2016 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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