TRAPPIST-1e is a rocky exoplanet in the habitable zone of a star 40 light-years from Earth and may have water and clouds, as depicted in this artist’s impression.
Life on Earth has dramatically changed the chemistry of the planet. Astronomers will measure light that bounces off distant planets to look for similar clues that they host life.
The mirror on the James Webb Space Telescope is fully aligned and producing incredibly sharp images, like this test image of a star.
NASA/STScI via Flickr
It has taken eight months to test and calibrate all of the instruments and modes of the James Webb Space Telescope. A scientist on the team explains what it took to get Webb up and running.
Artist’s impression of a giant planet forming.
NASA, ESA, STScI, Joseph Olmsted (STScI)
A glimpse of a distant Jupiter-sized exoplanet sheds light on how gas giants form.
The Hubble Space Telescope was born from a previous decadal survey. What leaps forward will come from this one?
The astronomy and astrophysics decadal survey for the 2020s lays out plans to search for life on distant planets, understand the formation of galaxies and solve deep mysteries of physics.
An artist’s impression of the dark side of ultra-hot Jupiter WASP-121b.
Credit: Patricia Klein / MPIA
Scientists have mapped the entire atmosphere of ultra-hot exoplanet WASP-121b.
The locations of 115 candidate free floating planets in the region between Upper Scorpius and Ophiuchus.
European Southern Observatory
Some planets are rejected by the Solar System that gave birth to them.
An artistic representation of 10 hot Jupiters, studied with the Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes.
Clouds, hellish temperatures, endless nights? Characterizing the atmosphere of exoplanets, planets that orbit stars other than the sun, is a formidable task.
James Webb Space Telescope mirrors undergoing cryogenic testing.
JSWT may be able to discover signs of life on planets around other stars.
SPP 1992 (Patricia Klein)
Most of what we know about planets outside our Solar System relates to gas-giant planets. A new study has identified and characterised a smaller exoplanet.
Artist’s impression of exoplanet KELT-11 b.
Impression by Léa Changeat.
AI loves to cheat, but new research shows it doesn’t do so when analysing the atmospheres of exoplanets.
An artist’s impression of the exoplanet WASP-76b, which is hot enough to vaporize metals.
(European Southern Observatory/M. Kornmesser)
On the ultra-hot exoplanet WASP-76b, metal is vaporized in the heat. Studying the atmosphere of extreme planets will reveal more wild and weird weather.
Astronomers hunting extraterrestrials were excited to discover an intriguing signal, but closer inspection has revealed it wasn’t aliens.
Artist’s rendition of the Jupiter-like planet and its white dwarf star.
W. M. Keck Observatory/Adam Makarenko
In 5 billion years the Sun will collapse. A new discovery suggest some planets may still survive afterwards.
Scientists have spotted a Jupiter-like planet surviving the death of its star.
Credit: W. M. Keck Observatory/Adam Makarenko
For the first time ever, astronomers have astrophysical evidence that Jupiter and many other planets will survive the death of the Sun.
Astronomers have found a way to estimate the number of stars in the universe.
Comstock Images via Getty Images
Scientists have a good estimate on the staggering number of stars in the universe.
The James Webb Space Telescope is the biggest orbital telescope ever built and is scheduled to be launched into space on Dec. 18, 2021.
The largest orbital telescope ever made will allow astronomers to study the atmospheres of alien planets, learn about how stars form in the Milky Way and peer into the farthest reaches of the universe.
NASA / Tim Pyle
By studying the chemical makeup of binary stars, astronomers found many planetary systems are far less peaceful than ours.
Can the Galileo Project find alien technology?
Artist illustration of an exoplanet.
dottedhippo/iStock via Getty Images
Billions of galaxies are in the universe, with billions of stars in every galaxy. Could billions of planets be out there too?
Weather on other planets and moons can be much more extreme than on Earth.