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Worlds without end: The number of candidate exoplanets found by Kepler has now risen to 3,500.
According to this new analysis, researchers estimate about 70% of stars are host to at least one planet, making planets a common cosmic occurrence. There are now 1,750 candidates that are super-Earth-size or smaller, and 1,788 are Neptune-size or larger. Only 167 of the 3,538 candidates are confirmed to be planets, but Kepler has a good track record: the vast majority of these are probably real.
Two dozen of these candidates are in the habitable zone, ten of which are thought to be close to Earth-sized.