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NASA's Kepler Mission

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Researchers using NASA's Kepler mission data have measured the mass of a Mars-size exoplanet that is about one tenth the mass of Earth. Called Kepler-138b, it is the first exoplanet smaller than Earth to have both its mass and size measured. This significantly extends the range of planets with measured densities.

Daniel Jontof-Hutter, a research associate at the Pennsylvania State University’s Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds, led a team of astronomers in a study to measure the mass of all three planets in the Kepler-138 system by precisely observing the times each planet passed in front of, or transited, their host star..

"Each planet periodically slows down and accelerates ever so slightly from the gravity of its neighboring planets. The slight change in time between transits allows us to measure the masses of the planets," said Jontof-Hutter.

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Astronomers use the gravitational tug of neighboring exoplanets to measure the mass of a Mars-size world
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Paul Arnote's profile photoKevin Templeman's profile photo

NASA's Kepler Mission

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It was nearly a year ago that the Kepler spacecraft made a comeback after a technical setback: the loss of its ultra precise pointing capability. Revived as the K2 mission, now in its fifth observing campaign, the spacecraft continues to operate beautifully!
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NASA's Kepler Mission

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Six years ago, Kepler's search for other worlds that might in some way be like our own began.
That search continues today.
Here are the stats
On May 12, 2009, NASA's Kepler spacecraft began hunting for planets outside the solar system. The graphic tells its story by the numbers.
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Андрей Рогачёв's profile photoHafis Hashim's profile photo

NASA's Kepler Mission

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Reborn Kepler Discovers First K2 Exoplanet!

NASA’s Kepler spacecraft makes a comeback with the discovery of the first exoplanet found using its new mission—K2. Using publicly available data, astronomers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) have confirmed K2's first exoplanet discovery proving Kepler can still find planets.

The newly confirmed planet, HIP 116454b, is 2.5 times the diameter of Earth, and closely orbits a star smaller and cooler than our sun once every nine days, making the planet too hot for life as we know it. The star and planet are 180 light-years from Earth toward the constellation Pisces.
NASA's planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft makes a comeback with the discovery of the first exoplanet found using its new mission -- K2.
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Michele Johnson's profile photoNoor Hussain's profile photo

NASA's Kepler Mission

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On Nov. 5 mission scientist +Natalie Batalha joins the cast of the upcoming film +Interstellar Movie LIVE from +NASA Ames Research Center  to talk exoplanet science fact!
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NASA's Kepler Mission

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Scientists use gyrochronology, or spin-rate of a star, to determine the age of 22 sun-like stars.

"Since stars and planets form together at the same time, by learning a star's age we learn the age of its planets. And since it takes time for life to develop and evolve, knowing the ages of planet-hosting stars could help narrow down the best targets to search for signs of alien life. Although none of the 22 stars in the new study are known to have planets, this work represents an important step in the hunt for Sun-like stars that could host Earth-like planets."

The paper is published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.

Read more: http://www.cfa.harvard.edu/news/2014-18
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Kepler detects a supernova? No, THREE of them! And, catches them before KABOOM!

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NASA’s Kepler and Swift have caught unprecedented glimpses of newborn supernovae, stellar explosions that can help unravel the secrets of dark energy.
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NASA's Kepler Mission

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VIDEO: The reinvented K2 mission catches Neptune dancing with its moons, Triton and Nereid! The movie illustrates 70 days of uninterrupted observation making this one of the longer continuous studies of an outer solar system object.

Kepler and SETI Institute scientist, Jason Rowe, used 101,580 images taken by the Kepler spacecraft from November 2014 through January 2015 during K2's Campaign. The 70-day time lapse is sped-up to 34 second and illustrates the perpetual clockwork of our solar system.

http://www.nasa.gov/feature/kepler/ames/kepler-observes-neptune-dance-with-its-moons
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NASA's Kepler Mission

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NASA's Kepler mission team will receive the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum's highest group honor at a ceremony in Washington on March 25. Established in 1985, the award recognizes outstanding achievements in the fields of aerospace science and technology and their history.

Watch the video of team members William Borucki, Natalie Batalha and Charlie Sobeck as they recount Kepler's exciting journey. The search continues...
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NASA's Kepler mission team will receive the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum's highest group honor at a ceremony in Washington on March 25.
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Андрей Рогачёв's profile photoDaniel Zalec's profile photo

NASA's Kepler Mission

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Today at 230p PT Kepler mission scientist +Natalie Batalha will talk #realInterstellar  exoplanet science fact on the #InterstellarHangout .
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A new mission manager update is live: K2 is collecting data and performing like a champ! #GoK2
Two-wheel Kepler officially began conducting science observations on May 30 and performance as have spectacular.
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K2 is a "go"!

The K2 mission, the two-wheel operation mode of the Kepler spacecraft observing in the ecliptic, has been approved based on a recommendation from the agency’s 2014 Senior Review of its operating missions.
The two-wheel operation mode of the Kepler spacecraft observing in the ecliptic is a "go"!
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A Search for Potentially Habitable Planets
Introduction
NASA's first mission capable of detecting Earth-size planets in the habitable zone around other stars like our sun.