Searching for planets around nearby stars is like searching for a needle in a field of haystacks.
Science is full of surprises. While searching for planets orbiting nearby stars, researchers stumbled across the remains of a star that once outshone the Sun.
Relative sizes of planets that are in a zone potentially compatible with life: Kepler-22b, Kepler-69c, Kepler-62e, Kepler-62f and Earth (named left to right; except for Earth, these are artists’ renditions).
The ancient question 'Are we alone?' has graduated from being a philosophical musing to a testable hypothesis. We should be prepared for an answer.
University of Warwick/Mark Garlick
Exoplanet discovery can help us work out how the Earth will end its days.
An artist’s impression of Kepler-22b, a planet known to comfortably circle in the habitable zone of a sun-like star. It is the first planet that NASA’s Kepler mission has confirmed to orbit in a star’s habitable zone - the region around a star where liquid water, a requirement for life on Earth, could persist.
Life could exist in another solar system in a different part our galaxy. Or in another galaxy far away. We don't have the perfect technology yet to study such far away places but we're still trying.
An artist’s impression of the surface of the planet orbiting Barnard’s Star.
ESO - M. Kornmesser
The new planet is believed to be orbiting Barnard's Star, a red dwarf that's not visible to the naked eye but one of the closest stars to our Solar System.
Nobody knows for sure - but it’s possible.
There are probably more than a million planets in the universe for every single grain of sand on Earth. That's a lot of planets. My guess is that there probably is life elsewhere in the Universe.
Artist’s impression of the exoplanet Kepler-1625b with its large moon.
A moon has been spotted in a star system 4000 light years away – but its structure is confusing.
Cloud Gate, 2004. Stainless steel, 1,006 x 2,012 x 1,280 cm.
Anish Kapoor made “Cloud Gate”, a giant bean-shaped mirror in Chicago. Visitors play with the light in the city and its surroundings, where our future lays.
The other galaxies are there, but they are hiding a very long way away.
We are in the Milky Way. If you travelled on an extremely fast spaceship for more than two million years, you would reach our neighbour, the Andromeda galaxy. All other galaxies are even further away.
Kepler 452-b is looking like a good candidate for having evolved life.
NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyl
Life could have evolved on exoplanets Kepler-452b and Kepler-62e, according to a new study.
Nearly 50 years since the first man walked on the moon, our morals are still stranded on Earth.
3D render of Pluto.
Images from New Horizons spacecraft provide more evidence about the surface of Pluto.
NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) successfully launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9.
The new planet-hunting telescope TESS was successfully launched today by NASA, and Australia will play a key role in checking out any new worlds it discovers.
Imagined view from Kepler-10b, a planet that orbits one of the 150,000 stars that the Kepler spacecraft is monitoring.
NASA/Kepler Mission/Dana Berry
When NASA first started planning the Kepler mission, no one knew if the universe held any planets outside our solar system. Thousands of exoplanets later, the search enters a new phase as Kepler retires.
Rocket Lab successfully launched its Electron rocket from the company’s complex on the Māhia Peninsula in New Zealand.
There are plenty of astronomical things to watch out for this year beyond this week's lunar eclipse, including new Moon landings and a space station falling back to Earth.
Blood moon on April 15, 2014.
Robert Jay GaBany/wikipedia,
Studying lunar eclipse could help us work out what's happening on exoplanets.
Artist impression of Kepler-90i, the eighth planet discovered orbiting around Kepler-90.
Google's artificial intelligence has been taught to look for planets around other stars. It's already making new discoveries that scientists have missed.
Artist’s impression of the enigmatic space rock.
Having discovered an asteroid from outside the solar system for the first time, scientists are hoping there are more out there – illuminating the path to extrasolar worlds.
An artist’s impression of the exoplanet in close orbit to a star.
ESA, NASA, G. Tinetti (University College London, UK & ESA) and M. Kornmesser (ESA/Hubble)
A solitary planet in an eccentric orbit around an ancient star may help astronomers understand exactly how such planetary systems are formed.
Aliens are highly likely to undergo natural selection, shows new research.