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NASA Detected 5,000+ Planets Outside Solar System

NASA has discovered more than 5,000 planets outside of our Solar system. Earth is the only one that appears to have the right conditions for human life.The planetary odometer turned on March 21, with the latest batch of 65 exoplanets outside our immediate Solar family. The archive records exoplanet discoveries that appear in peer-reviewed scientific papers and that have been confirmed using multiple detection methods or analytical techniques.

The 5,000-plus planets found include small, rocky worlds like Earth, gas giants many times larger than Jupiter, and “hot Jupiters” in scorchingly close orbits around their stars. There are “super-Earths,” which are possible rocky worlds bigger than our own, and “mini-Neptunes,” more miniature versions of our system’s Neptune.

The lead author said that finding just three planets around this spinning star opened the floodgates. The lead author on the paper that, 30 years ago, unveiled the first planets to be confirmed outside our Solar system. Wolszczan, who still searches for exoplanets as a professor at Penn State, says we’re opening an era of discovery that will go beyond simply adding new planets to the list.

The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, launched in 2018, continues to make new exoplanet discoveries.Soon powerful next-generation telescopes and their susceptible instruments, starting with the recently launched James Webb Space Telescope, will capture light from the atmospheres of exoplanets, reading which gases are present to identify tell-tale signs of habitable conditions potentially.

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