Tag Archives: super-earth

Planets abound!

It’s always fun when a government agency uses the word “bonanza” in a press release. NASA’s Kepler space telescope spent mission spent three and a half years observing distant stars in our galaxy looking for planets crossing in front of … Continue reading

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A planetary six-pack

Mercury, the closest planet to our Sun, is often thought of as being super-close to the Sun and super hot. But really, it’s 40% of Earth’s distance from the Sun, and it’s only 430 degrees Celsius (800 Fahrenheit) on the … Continue reading

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Super-Earths are odd things. They’re bigger than Earth, but smaller than gas giant planets, different from anything in our Solar System. The exact definition is a little fuzzy. Astronomers who find planets by the motions of their stars and usually … Continue reading

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Finding little planets

The easiest planets to find are the biggest ones. The larger a planet is, the larger the effect on its parent star, which is what we can see. It’s also easiest to spot planets close to their stars, since they … Continue reading

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