Searching for Earth-size planets outside our solar system
According to scientists, there are tens of billions of Earth-size planets in the galaxy.
The giant planet HR 8799b was discovered in 2007. The planet is young and hot, at a temperature of 1500 degrees Fahrenheit. It is slightly larger than Jupiter and may be 10 times more massive.
Based on four years of new ground-based observations, astrophysicists estimate that tens of billions of planets the size of Earth exist in the Milky Way alone. That doesn't mean they are in "habitable zones," but it increases the chances of finding Earth-like planets.
NASA/ESA/G. Bacon (STScI)
An artist's rendering of the Arches star cluster from deep inside the hub of the Milky Way galaxy. Hidden from our direct view, the massive cluster lies 25,000 light-years away and is the densest known gathering of young stars in our galaxy.
Astronomers have snapped a picture of three planets orbiting a distant star using a telescope on the ground.
A sampling of the oldest galaxies ever seen. The Hubble Space Telescope's NICMOS and new ACS cameras took the image.
An image from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. In addition to the supermassive black hole at the center, the area is filled with all sorts of inhabitants that affect and influence one another. The image shows three massive star clusters: the Arches (upper right), Quintuplet (upper center) and the GC star cluster (bottom center), which is near the enormous black hole known as Sagittarius A.
A piece of interplanetary dust caught by a high-flying U2-type aircraft. It likely originated in the early days of our solar system, being stored and later ejected by a passing comet. The particle is composed of glass, carbon and a conglomeration of silicate mineral grains. It measures 10 microns across, a tenth of the width of a typical human hair.
A 10-meter Keck telescope in Hawaii captured in infrared light three planets orbiting an artificially obscured central star. Each planet probably contains several times the mass of Jupiter, but even the innermost planet, labeled D, has an orbital radius near the equivalent of the sun-Neptune distance.
Article: Scientists estimate tens of billions of Earth-size planets in Milky Way
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