In a milestone hailed by scientists as a key step toward finding another Earth-like world, astronomers Tuesday announced the discovery of two blazingly hot planets roughly the size of Earth some 950 light years distant.
At least four times in the last few years, astronomers have announced they have found planets orbiting other stars in the sweet spot known as the habitable zone — not too hot, not too cold — where water and thus perhaps life are possible. In short, a so-called Goldilocks planet fit to be inhabited by the biochemical likes of us. Read more about Hot on Trail of ‘Just Right’ Far-Off Planet
Cambridge, MA - The search for planets outside our solar system continues to heat up. NASA's Kepler spacecraft has located more than 1,200 planetary candidates, however confirming them remains a challenge. In some circumstances, an eclipsing binary star can mimic the shallow dimming due to a planet crossing in front of its star. Ground-based measurements are needed to verify an orbiting world by spotting the gravitational wobbles it induces in its host star, in a method known as radial velocity. Read more about HARPS-N Instrument Will Help Confirm Kepler's Planet Finds