An international team of scientists have confirmed the discovery of nearly 100 new exoplanets planets located outside our solar system. The discovery was based on data from the second mission of NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope or K2 released in 2014. K2 searches for exoplanet transits by registering dips in light caused by the shadow of an exoplanet as it crosses in front of its host star.
1. One of the planets detected was found orbiting a very bright star.
2. The researchers found that some of the signals were caused by multiple star systems or noise from the spacecraft.
3. The star called HD 212657 is the brightest star found by K2 missions to host a validated planet.
4. Among these, 95 were proved be new discoveries.
5. The Kepler spacecraft was first launched in 2009 to hunt for exoplanets in a single patch of sky, but in 2013 a mechanical failure crippled the telescope.
6. The researchers had initiated the study by analysing 275 candidates of which 149 were validated as real
7. The newly discovered exoplanets brings the total number of exoplanets by K2 mission to almost 300.
8. The first planet orbiting a star similar to our own Sun was detected only in 1995.
9. 15 February 2018 some 3,600 exoplanets have been found, ranging from rocky Earth-sized planets to large gas giants like Jupiter.