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NASA's Kepler Space Telescope Reveals Strangeness of Alien Solar Systems

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posted on May, 23 2011 @ 12:04 PM
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Alien solar systems with multiple planets appear to be common in our galaxy, but most of them are quite different than our own, a new study finds.


NASA's Kepler Space Telescope detected 1,235 alien planet candidates in its first four months of operation. Of those, 408 reside in multiple-planet systems, suggesting that our own configuration of multiple worlds orbiting a single star isn't so special. What may be special, however, is the orientation of our solar system's planets. Some of them are tilted significantly off the solar system's plane, while most of the Kepler systems are nearly as flat as a tabletop, researchers said.



Watching for transiting planets

The Kepler spacecraft launched in March 2009, tasked with searching for Earth-size alien planets in their stars' habitable zones — that just-right range of distances that can support liquid water. Kepler finds these distant worlds by searching for tiny, telltale dips in a star's brightness that occur when a planet transits — or crosses in front of — it from Earth's perspective. The 1,235 candidate planets detected so far still need to be confirmed by follow-up studies, though researchers estimate at least 80 percent of them will pan out.

Strangely flat orbits

In our solar system, some planet orbits are tilted by up to 7 degrees, meaning that an alien astronomer looking for transits wouldn’t be able to detect all eight planets. In particular, they would miss Mercury and Venus, researchers said. The planetary systems spotted by Kepler have orbits tilted less than 1 degree, they added.

These multiplanet systems are probably so flat because they lack Jupiter-size giant planets, whose gravitational influence can disrupt planetary systems, tilting the orbits of neighboring worlds, researchers said. "Jupiters are the 800-pound gorillas stirring things up during the early history of these systems," Latham said. "Other studies have found plenty of systems with big planets, but they’re not flat."

As Kepler continues to gather data, it will be able to spot planets with wider orbits, including some in the habitable zones of their stars. Transit timing variations may play a key role in confirming the first rocky planets in their stars' habitable zones, researchers said.


Source: www.foxnews.com...

Keep probing away there Kepler. Find what we seek.

Love this stuff. Great for Mankind and the earth as a whole.

If there are other beings out there that we can connect with... watch out!!!!

I think doing this type of investigatng is worth it's weight in Gold. I do think the furture of the Human Race, won't be on this planet.

The whole "Flat" universe, that got me. I still can put my brain around that one.


edit on 5/23/2011 by anon72 because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 23 2011 @ 12:15 PM
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Doctor who is looking more realistic every day! Anybody remember the episode where everybody fled earth on shuttles because of the solar flares, waiting on the earth to stabilize ? That's how earth will probably be in the future, well at least we have a few options......



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 12:23 PM
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One theory why our planets are not in line with the rest of the galaxy is that Earth was actually part of the Sagittarius Dwarf galaxy. And our galaxy collided with the milky way.

We are not from here



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 12:33 PM
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reply to post by Mythos13
 


Man, you just blew my mind away with that link.

I can't believe I never heard of that theory/research.

Thank you... and, doesn't that toss a bunch load of issues into any mix about our past etc.

let me ask... when the solar system collide into each other... what kind of affect would the people alive on Earth be? Would they notice (easily) that they mergered.

I realize it would take a long time but... could the collision wiped out the earth as it was then and then the earth repopulated when thing settled? Example. Ice Age(s). were they caused by the merger?



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 01:44 PM
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reply to post by anon72
 


You misunderstood, the comments was on galaxies merging. When galaxies merge it is extremely unlikely individual planets/stars have impacts. There is just too much space as compared to objects.



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 03:26 PM
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reply to post by anon72
 


I wouldn't worry. WE might have just recently found this out, but its been happening for millions of years. And in a few million years it will happen when Andromeda eats the Milky way.



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 03:54 PM
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Originally posted by Mythos13
One theory why our planets are not in line with the rest of the galaxy is that Earth was actually part of the Sagittarius Dwarf galaxy. And our galaxy collided with the milky way.

We are not from here

Viewzone is notorious for posting nonsense, just like this. We are not part of the Sagittarius dwarf galaxy. Our proper motion through the milky way is perpendicular to the proper motion of stars from the Sagittarius dwarf galaxy, which is what you would expect of a normal milky way solar system.


It is remarkable that the Sun presently lies within a
kiloparsec of the Sgr debris plane (MSWO). The pole of
the plane, (lp, bp) = (272,-12) degrees, means that the line of
nodes of its intersection with the MW plane is almost
coincident with the XGC axis. Thus (Fig. 2) the motions
of Sgr stars within this plane are almost entirely con-
tained in their Galactic U and W velocity components,
whereas the V motions of stars in the Sgr tidal tails al-
most entirely reflect solar motion.

www.astro.caltech.edu...

The Sagittarius dwarf exhibits no motion in the V vector, which is our primary vector of motion within the milky way.
ej.iop.org...
(the middle number of V sol is the velocity within the V vector:
iopscience.iop.org... )
What all this means is that we're not part of the Sagittarius stream since we do not share a common motion of travel at all.



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 03:59 PM
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reply to post by ngchunter
 


I Actually first read the story on Discovery News, but i was too lazy to go look it up, and used a different source. The story is real, not a hoax.



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 04:00 PM
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Originally posted by Heartisblack
Doctor who is looking more realistic every day!


I love DW.

Has anyone noticed the bees?
edit on 23-5-2011 by Beavers because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 23 2011 @ 04:02 PM
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Originally posted by Mythos13
reply to post by ngchunter
 


I Actually first read the story on Discovery News, but i was too lazy to go look it up, and used a different source. The story is real, not a hoax.

The sagittarius dwarf galaxy is real, but we are not from it.

*Edit to add, here are the only 2 news stories on Discovery News that include the words "Sagittarius dwarf." Neither says anything about our solar system being a part of it.
news.discovery.com...
news.discovery.com...
edit on 23-5-2011 by ngchunter because: (no reason given)



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