Kepler Mission

An illustration of Kepler

Kepler Mission

Scientists are searching for Earth-like planets with the Kepler space telescope. It works by detecting periodic variations in the brightness of stars caused by orbiting exoplanets passing in front of them.

In February 2011 the Kepler team announced they had found 54 planets thought to be suitable for life because they lie in their stars' habitable zones. Five of these planets are Earth-sized.

The telescope's discoveries also include the Kepler-11 solar system - six large exoplanets circling an eight billion year-old star, 2,000 light years from Earth.

Image: An illustration of Kepler (credit: NASA/Kepler mission/Wendy Stenzel)

Watch and listen to clips from past programmes TV clips [1]

An illustration of Kepler

Introduction

A mission hunts for exoplanets similar to the Earth.

About Kepler Mission

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