“NASA’s Kepler spacecraft has discovered a whopping 706 candidate planets beyond the solar system,” says Science News. The find nearly doubles the amount of known planets outside our solar system. “‘This is a massively historic discovery,’ says study coauthor Sara Seager, a theorist at MIT. ‘This is showing how the Kepler mission will revolutionize exoplanets and change the way we do exoplanet science.’ The newly reported findings don’t include details about the most interesting 400 of the 706 candidate planets, which orbit the brightest stars Kepler has surveyed. These cases may offer the most promise for finding planets with masses close to Earth‘s own. Information on these 400 planets won’t be made public until next February.”
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