The Kepler team today announced the discovery of eleven new solar systems holding twenty-six planets.


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Planets galore! The Kepler team today announced the discovery of eleven new solar systems holding twenty-six planets.

The planets orbit close to their host stars and range in size from 1.5 times the radius of Earth to larger than Jupiter. Fifteen of them are between Earth and Neptune in size, and further observations will be required to determine which are rocky like Earth and which have thick gaseous atmospheres like Neptune. The planets orbit their host star once every six to 143 days. All are closer to their host star than Venus is to our sun.

No Earths in the habitable zone quite yet, but we are circling in on our prey.

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  • The news media have a siuroes problem understanding the underpinings of science. Mention earth-like planets and the first thing that pops up is the topic of intelligent life despite the fact that it’s the least likely thing to turn up. Although we suspect simple life forms may exist elsewhere in our solar system, until we can actually demonstrate extra terrestial life , the default condition is that we are the only planet with life. Anything else is simply uncorroborated speculation.

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