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What are extrasolar planets?

For countless generations, human beings have looked out at the night sky and wondered if they were alone in the universe. With the discovery of other planets in our solar system, the true extent of the Milky ...

dateMay 25, 2015 in Astronomy
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A curious family of giant exoplanets

There are 565 exoplanets currently known that are as massive as Jupiter or bigger, about one third of the total known, confirmed exoplanet population. About one quarter of the massive population orbits very ...

dateMay 25, 2015 in Astronomy
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A conversation with astronomer Dimitri Mawet

Associate Professor of Astronomy Dimitri Mawet has joined Caltech from the Paranal Observatory in Chile, where he was a staff astronomer for the Very Large Telescope. After earning his PhD at the University ...

dateMay 18, 2015 in Astronomy
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Circular orbits for small extrasolar planets

Orbits of 74 small extrasolar planets are found to be close to circular, in contrast to previous measurements of massive exoplanets. The results, to be published in the Astrophysical Journal are obtained by the ...

dateMay 14, 2015 in Astronomy
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Does the red planet have green auroras?

Martian auroras will never best the visual splendor of those we see on Earth, but have no doubt. The red planet still has what it takes to throw an auroral bash. Witness the latest news from NASA's MAVEN ...

dateMay 14, 2015 in Space Exploration
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Kepler's six years in science (and counting)

NASA's Kepler spacecraft began hunting for planets outside our solar system on May 12, 2009. From the trove of data collected, we have learned that planets are common, that most sun-like stars have at least ...

dateMay 13, 2015 in Astronomy
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Ceres animation showcases bright spots

The mysterious bright spots on the dwarf planet Ceres are better resolved in a new sequence of images taken by NASA's Dawn spacecraft on May 3 and 4, 2015. The images were taken from a distance of 8,400 miles ...

dateMay 11, 2015 in Space Exploration
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