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Report from AAS: Exoplanets (and exo-asteroids, and exo-comets) everywhere

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/01/08 06:52 CST | 7 comments

This year's American Astronomical Society meeting featured tons and tons of news on exoplanets. They're everywhere! And not just planets, but also asteroids, comets, and more....

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Can you find a new planet?

Posted by Martin Still on 2013/01/07 12:35 CST | 1 comment

A change in the Kepler data delivery process provides both scientists and the public to get involved in planet discovery.

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First Planet Discovered in Alpha Centauri System
Information on the Discovery, and also Insights from Debra Fischer

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2012/10/17 07:22 CDT | 12 comments

European astronomers have made the first planetary discovery in the closest-to-Earth Alpha Centauri star system. Here is some information about the discovery, and insights from Yale Astronomer Debra Fischer, who leads another Alpha Centauri planet search partially supported by The Planetary Society.

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Every Planet in the Galaxy!

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2012/06/20 10:24 CDT | 2 comments

Okay, just the ones we know about. xkcd does it again.

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A possible nine-planet system

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/04/06 04:06 CDT | 1 comment

Someone on Twitter pointed me to a paper recently posted to ArXiv titled "Evidence for 9 planets in the HD 10180 system." If the (tentative) conclusion holds up, HD 10180 will be the first exoplanetary system known to have more planets than our own.

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Watch this week's Google+ Space Hangout

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/01/19 03:12 CST

This week's lineup is a largely astronomical crowd so most of the conversation concerned dark matter and boiling exoplanets and imaging the black hole at the center of our galaxy.

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Separating fact from speculation about Kepler-20's Earth-sized planets

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2011/12/20 04:53 CST

A large team of researchers has announced in a Nature article the discovery of not one, but two, Earth-sized planets orbiting a star named Kepler-20. This article separates the observational facts from the quite-likely-to-be-true inferences from the downstream speculations.

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Hubble's Millionth Observation

Posted by Bill Nye on 2011/07/05 05:15 CDT

The Hubble Space Telescope has recorded its millionth observation. The planet is designated HAT-P-7b.

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Observing at the WIYN

Posted by Meg Schwamb on 2011/06/08 02:43 CDT

On May 5 and 6, I had a run on the WIYN (Wisconsin-Indiana-Yale-NOAO) telescope, a 3.5 m telescope, the second largest telescope on Kitt Peak in Arizona.

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Searching for one planet, finding another

Posted by Konstantin Batygin on 2011/05/23 07:35 CDT

Some parallels exist between Odysseus' journey and the discoveries of exoplanets. What initially started out as a well-planned trip from Troy back to Ithaca, turned into a series of rather unfortunate events, with episodes of fighting Cyclops and having your crew turned into swine.

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SETI@home Following Up on Kepler Discoveries

Posted by Charlene Anderson on 2011/05/13 06:15 CDT

Remember SETI@home? The ground-breaking computing project is now taking a look at candidate Earth-like planets that have been detected by NASA's Kepler space telescope.

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Are there more Titans than Earths in the Milky Way?

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2011/04/14 11:30 CDT

Might there be many Titan-like planets and moons, with atmospheres and liquid methane rain, rivers, and lakes, across the galaxy? It's an important question if you think that liquid methane environments could support alien life, because it turns out that Titan-like planets might be more common than Earth-like planets.

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More on Kepler exoplanet discoveries

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2011/02/04 12:17 CST

Here's some links to some good followup stories on Wednesday's Kepler press briefing.

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Kepler announcement today: More than a thousand exoplanets including one 6-planet system

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2011/02/02 12:26 CST

I wasn't able to watch the Kepler press briefing today so I will give you links to some of my favorite blogs for information on today's announcement, which follows a major data release last night as well as the publication of a paper in Nature.

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Grab bag: "Rocky" exoplanet, molten lunar core, Rhea close encounter

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2011/01/10 02:12 CST

The Kepler exoplanet hunting mission has made news today with a report of "its first rocky planet."

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Evaporating exoplanet

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/01/06 11:50 CST

CoRoT-7b was the first unambiguously rocky planet to be discovered and was quite small, at under five Earth masses. But a press release issued today suggests that its history probably has little to do with Earth's.

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Bruce Betts: Kepler discovers its first five exoplanets

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2010/01/04 12:06 CST

Congratulations to NASA's Kepler mission team on their announcement of the discovery of its first five exoplanets (planets around other stars). All five are "hot Jupiters," meaning that they are the sizes of the gas giants in our solar system, but are extremely close to their parent stars.

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Europlanet : CoRoT - Preliminary Results

Posted by Doug Ellison on 2007/08/20 03:48 CDT

ESA's planet-hunting satellite COROT bagged its first exoplanet in observations of the star COROT-Exo-1.

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The Planetary Society and the Search for Extrasolar Planets

Posted by Amir Alexander on 2005/10/27 12:00 CDT

Almost since it was founded in 1980, The Planetary Society has been there for the search for other worlds.

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