Kepler 22-b was one of 54 exoplanet candidates in habitable zones reported by the Kepler team in February, and is just the first to be formally confirmed using other telescopes.
Will the elite go?
More of these "Earth 2.0" candidates are likely to be confirmed in the near future, though a redefinition of the habitable zone’s boundaries has brought that number down to 48. Ten of those are Earth-sized.
The Kepler space telescope was designed to look at a fixed swathe of the night sky, staring intently at about 150,000 stars. The telescope is sensitive enough to see when a planet passes in front of its host star, dimming the star’s light by a minuscule amount.
Kepler identifies these slight changes in starlight as candidate planets, which are then confirmed by further observations by Kepler and other telescopes in orbit and on Earth.
* Stares fixedly at a patch corresponding to 1/400th of the sky
* Looks at more than 155,000 stars
* Has so far found 2,326 candidate planets
* Among them are 207 Earth-sized planets, 10 of which are in the "habitable zone" where liquid water can exist
Kepler 22-b lies 15% closer to its sun than the Earth is to our Sun, and its year takes about 290 days. However, the planet’s host star 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.
"The first transit was captured just three days after we declared the spacecraft operationally ready. We witnessed the defining third transit over the 2010 holiday season."
The results were announced at the Kepler telescope’s first science conference, alongside the staggering number of new candidate planets. The total number of candidates spotted by the telescope is now 2,326 - of which 207 are approximately Earth-sized.
In total, the results suggest that planets ranging from Earth-sized to about four times Earth’s size - so-called "super-Earths" - may be more common than previously thought.
As candidates for planets similar to Earth are confirmed, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (Seti) has a narrower focus for its ongoing hunt.
"This is a superb opportunity for Seti observations," said Jill Tarter, the director of the Center for Seti Research at the Seti Institute.
"For the first time, we can point our telescopes at stars, and know that those stars actually host planetary systems - including at least one that begins to approximate an Earth analogue in the habitable zone around its host star.
"Policy of multiculturalism in Europe has failed" 2013 05 22 The UK is experiencing a deficit of Caucasian people in the regions where the majority of the population is made up of immigrants and ethnic minorities. In the last 10 years more than 620 thousand white Brits left the capital of the UK, where Caucasians are now a minority making up only 45% of London’s population.
The policy of multiculturalism in ...
Stockholm braced for further rioting by young immigrants 2013 05 21
Main article from FT.com follows below this comment:
Well, all of this is hardly unexpected, since there now is pretty much annual riots in Sweden. Disgruntled immigrants who are burning cars, schools and other buildings is now turning into the norm in Sweden ...as it seems to be throughout the rest of Europe. Stones are flying and you can smell the ...
Dzhokhar’s boat ‘confession’ the most unbelievable part yet of Boston psyop 2013 05 21 Remember the notes that accompanied the anthrax deliveries right after 9/11? They said things like, “Allah is great!” “Death to Israel,” “Death to America!” and “9-11-01: This is next.”
In other words, THE MUSLIMS DID IT: the same ones who had so handily defeated the world’s greatest military machine on Sept. 11, 2001. And they did it because they hate us ...
The Mystery of the ’Immaculately Conceived’ Baby Anteater 2013 05 21 [...]Staffers at a zoological conservation center in Greenwich, Conn., are very confused — as are the rest of us — because their female giant anteater, Armani, has managed to conceive a baby, apparently without the presence of a male anteater.
It all started in August, writes Lisa Chamoff for Greenwich Time. Armani, an anteater at the LEO Zoological Conservation Center, ...
The US Government Might Be the Biggest Hacker in the World 2013 05 21 Cyber crime is big business in the US. It’s used to spy, steal, harass competition, political opponents, or to stage an attack and blamed it on a foreign enemy.
Is the government in on this crime industry? Yes, and in bigger ways than you can imagine…
This trend is enabled domestically by an institutionally corrupt US legal system and a police state ...