NASA releases Kepler Survey Catalog with hundreds of new planet candidates
NASA’s Kepler space telescope team has discovered 219 new planets, 10 out of it are near-Earth size and in the habitable zone of their star. They were the first agency mission capable of detecting Earth-size planets using the transit method.
In this method, a photometric technique that measures the minuscule dimming of starlight as a planet passes in front of it. New Survey results of Kepler Mission 2, was released on 19th June 2017, which has introduced the world to 219 new planets and 10 out of them are earth-like.
The data is publically available on the NASA Exoplanet Archive. With this new discovery, the count of planets identified by Kepler has increased to 4034, of which, 2335 have been verified and declared as exoplanets. Notably, there are 50 near-Earth size habitable zone candidates which are detected by Kepler, out of which 30 have been verified.
“The Kepler data set is unique as it is the only one containing a population of these near-Earth-analogs-planets with roughly the same size and orbit as earth,” said Mario Perez, Kepler Program Scientist in a news conference at NASA’s Ames Research Centre in California’s Silicon Valley on Monday.
The study has revealed that there can be many earth-like planets where life is possible and they have water on the surface. Also, many planets have been discovered where life is impossible to thrive.
The study and survey shows the types of planets which were undercounted and were overcounted by the earlier studies. The new survey gives a clear index and detailed information about many new planets added to the list of planet candidates.
“This carefully-measured catalog is the foundation for directly answering one of the astronomy’s most compelling questions- how many planets like our earth are in the galaxy?” said Susan Thompson, Kepler research scientist and lead author of the catalog study.
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