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NASA will reveal new discoveries made by its planet-hunting Kepler space telescope on Monday (Dec. 5), according to a recent agency announcement.
NASA will hold a press conference at 11 a.m. EST (1600 GMT) Monday at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif. Researchers will discuss new developments since Kepler's last major announcement, which occurred nearly a year ago and included a treasure trove of 1,235 newfound alien planet candidates.
"The briefing will provide an update on the statistical findings since Kepler's Feb. 1, 2011, science data release and introduce a new confirmed planetary discovery," NASA officials said in the advisory Thursday (Dec. 1).
Briefing participants include:
— Pete Worden, director of Ames Research Center
— Natalie Batalha, Kepler deputy science team lead at Ames
— Bill Borucki, Kepler principal investigator at Ames
— Jill Tarter, director of the Center for SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Research, SETI Institute, Mountain View, Calif.
The press conference also kicks off the inaugural Kepler Science Conference, which will discuss past Kepler finds in detail. The conference will run from Dec. 5 to Dec. 9 at Ames and will feature more than 110 scientific presentations, officials said.
Originally posted by ValentineWiggin
SETI participated in the last one if I am not mistaken...correct me if I am wrong.
Astronomers have confirmed the existence of an Earth-like planet in the "habitable zone" around a star not unlike our own. The planet, Kepler 22-b, lies about 600 light-years away and is about 2.4 times the size of Earth, and has a temperature of about 22C. It is the closest confirmed planet yet to one like ours - an "Earth 2.0".
Kepler 22-b lies at a distance from its sun about 15% less than the distance from the Earth to the Sun, and its year takes about 290 days. However, its sun puts out about 25% less light, keeping the planet at its balmy temperature that would support the existence of liquid water. The Kepler team had to wait for three passes of the planet before upping its status from "candidate" to "confirmed". "Fortune smiled upon us with the detection of this planet," said William Borucki, Kepler principal investigator at Nasa's Ames Research Center.