TESS can be thought of as the first half of a Kepler-like program. It will help find a lot of planets, including a few that may be close enough to be imaged by existing hardware. But it’s mostly laying the groundwork for the giant telescopes that are currently under construction, as well as the James Webb Space Telescope, which continues to inch toward launch. These will greatly expand our reach out into the galaxy, vastly increasing the distance at which we can image planetary atmospheres.
Posts tagged "exoplanets"
New Exoplanet Spotted Forming
A planet-hunting instrument has captured the first confirmed image of a newborn planet that’s still forming in our galaxy.
A stunning, first-of-its-kind photo shows a giant alien world taking shape in the disk of gas and dust surrounding a young star.
A Galaxy Full of Exomoons
There are eight planets in our Solar System (sorry Pluto), but collectively, these planets host over 175 moons, one or two of which may even harbor life. Indeed, our galaxy, based on what we observe here, could be bursting with exomoons, a significant number of which may be capable of fostering life, according to new a new study.
Header image courtesy https://exoplanets.nasa.gov
Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite: Monday Launch
NASA launches TESS, to follow up KEPLER’s work:
If a planet-hunting spacecraft sounds familiar, it’s likely because of the rich diversity of worlds found so far by NASA’s venerable Kepler space probe. Since 2009, Kepler has been harvesting planets from the cosmos, spying the footprints of these alien worlds in distant starlight. Kepler alone can claim more than 2,600 discoveries, some of which could be rocky planets quite similar to Earth.
Launched last week, TESS will scan 200,000 close and bright stars, seeking new planets and possibly livable worlds. Here’s a roundtable discussion with 2 scientists on the TESS mission.
We’re Discovering Planets In Other Galaxies
The discovery confirms what scientists have long expected.