Tag Archives: Kepler

Planet-hunting Kepler telescope runs out of gas

NASA’s Kepler planet-hunting telescope now belongs to the ages, with its fuel completely spent and its instruments shut down — but the planet quest continues, thanks to a treasure trove of downloaded data as well as a new generation of robotic … Continue reading

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Hubble boosts evidence for first exomoon

With a lot of help from the Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers now feel confident enough to publish their evidence for the first moon detected in orbit around a planet beyond our solar system. But they’re still not completely confident. “At … Continue reading

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Kepler probe suspends planet hunt to send data

NASA has hit the pause button on observations by its most prolific planet-hunting probe, the Kepler space telescope, so that it can download 51 days’ worth science data without interruption. The reason? Kepler’s fuel tanks are close to empty. After the download, Kepler will … Continue reading

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Unusual suspects for ‘alien megastructure’ star

That mysterious “alien megastructure” star is still a mystery, but the most plausible explanations appear to be dense patches of interstellar gas or dust that just happened to pass in front of the star. That’s the upshot of analyses conducted … Continue reading

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‘Alien megastructure’ star’s mystery deepens

It’s been almost a year since astronomers first speculated that a strangely dimming star called KIC 8462852 might harbor an alien megastructure, and newly reported observations are making the case even stranger. KIC 8462852 is also known as Tabby’s Star, … Continue reading

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Revived Kepler mission adds 104 planets to list

Astronomers say they’ve confirmed the existence of 104 worlds to add to the list of extrasolar planets detected by NASA’s Kepler K2 mission, and at least two of them appear to be potentially habitable super-Earths. The two prospects are among … Continue reading

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Youngest planet spotted around alien star

Scientists say they’ve detected a giant planet circling a star that’s only 5 million to 10 million years old, which would make it the youngest exoplanet ever identified. The super-Neptune-sized planet traces a super-close-in orbit, making a complete swing around its parent … Continue reading

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