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IN Science & Technology ON 22 Jul, 2015
The space agency NASA is planning to make an announcement revealing the ‘new and latest discoveries’ made by the Kepler Space Telescope. The telescope is on a specific aim to search for habitable planets and looks like it has done a really good job. Discovery of habitable planets in the Solar system and beyond would be a huge breakthrough in the history of NASA and science itself.
A spokesperson for NASA said, "Exoplanets, especially small Earth-size worlds, belonged within the realm of science fiction just 21 years ago. Today, and thousands of discoveries later, astronomers are on the cusp of finding something people have dreamed about for thousands of years - another Earth."
The details of the research will be released with the press conference itself.
NASA has released a statement that it will hold a press conference soon, to reveal : ' new discoveries made by its planet-hunting mission, the Kepler Space Telescope'.
NASA launched the Kepler Spacecraft in 2009 with the discrete object of discovering and locating extrasolar planets, better known as exoplanets. Exoplanets are the planets which revolve around a star other than the Sun, can sustain life and have similar attributes to the Earth.
Discovered in 2011, an orbiting star called Kepler-20 is the parent star of the later discovered extrasolar planets Kepler-20e and Kepler-20f. Kepler-20f is almost identical in size to Earth while the radius of Kepler-20e is 0.87 times of radius of Earth. Both the planets believed to be rocky, composed of iron and silicate. Their surface temperature value of Kepler-20f is 426 Celsius and that of Kepler-20e is a baking 726 C, meaning neither of them are supposedly habitable.
Kepler-22b is another planet lying in NASA's 'habitable zone', with diameter twice that of Earth. It's surface temperature is believed to be around 22 Celsius, based on its postulated composition.
The habitable zone is technically the distance of the heavenly body (planet here) from a star such that it can sustain liquid water in its surface temperature.
The Kepler Spacecraft has discovered 1,028 planets since its launch and the good news is, 22 of those are believed to be sustainable for life. Since its launch, the Kepler Spacecraft has picked out 1,028 planets and 22 of those are believed to have conditions suited for life.