NASA’s Kepler Confirms 100+ Exoplanets During Its K2 Mission

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Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. HerbeautyWomen Love These Great Tips To Making Your Teeth Look WhiterHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty15 Countries Where Men Have Difficulties Finding A WifeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyStop Eating Read Meat (Before It’s Too Late)HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty10 Questions To Start Conversation Way Better Than ‘How U Doing?’HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty8 Easy Exotic Meals Anyone Can MakeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty7 Most Startling Movie Moments We Didn’t Realize Were InsensitiveHerbeautyHerbeauty Community News Top of the News center_img Community News Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena This artist’s concept shows NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope on its K2 mission. In July 2016, an international team of astronomers announced they had discovered more than 100 new planets using this telescope. Credit: NASA/JPL-CaltechAn international team of astronomers has discovered and confirmed a treasure trove of new worlds using NASA’s Kepler spacecraft on its K2 mission. Out of 197 initial planet candidates, scientists have confirmed 104 planets outside our solar system. Among the confirmed is a planetary system comprising four promising planets that could be rocky.These four planets, all between 20 and 50 percent larger than Earth by diameter, are orbiting the M dwarf star K2-72, found 181 light-years away in the direction of the Aquarius constellation. The host star is less than half the size of the sun and less bright. The planets’ orbital periods range from five-and-a-half to 24 days, and two of them may experience irradiation levels from their star comparable to those on Earth. Despite their tight orbits — closer than Mercury’s orbit around our sun — the possibility that life could arise on a planet around such a star cannot be ruled out, according to lead author Ian Crossfield, a Sagan Fellow at the University of Arizona’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory in Tucson.The researchers achieved this extraordinary “roundup” of exoplanets by combining data with follow-up observations by Earth-based telescopes including the North Gemini telescope and the W. M. Keck Observatory in Hawaii, the Automated Planet Finder of the University of California Observatories, and the Large Binocular Telescope operated by the University of Arizona. The discoveries are published online in the Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series.Both Kepler and its K2 mission discover new planets by measuring the subtle dip in a star’s brightness caused by a planet passing in front of its star. In its initial mission, Kepler surveyed just one patch of sky in the northern hemisphere, determining the frequency of planets whose size and temperature might be similar to Earth orbiting stars similar to our sun. In the spacecraft’s extended mission in 2013, it lost its ability to precisely stare at its original target area, but a brilliant fix. created a second life for the telescope that is proving scientifically fruitful.After the fix, Kepler started its K2 mission, which has provided an ecliptic field of view with greater opportunities for Earth-based observatories in both the northern and southern hemispheres. Additionally, the K2 mission is entirely community-driven with all targets proposed by the scientific community.Because it covers more of the sky, the K2 mission is capable of observing a larger fraction of cooler, smaller, red-dwarf type stars, and because such stars are much more common in the Milky Way than sun-like stars, nearby stars will predominantly be red dwarfs.“An analogy would be to say that Kepler performed a demographic study, while the K2 mission focuses on the bright and nearby stars with different types of planets,” said Crossfield. “The K2 mission allows us to increase the number of small, red stars by a factor of 20, significantly increasing the number of astronomical ‘movie stars’ that make the best systems for further study.”To validate candidate planets identified by K2, the researchers obtained high-resolution images of the planet-hosting stars as well as high-resolution optical spectroscopy. By dispersing the starlight as through a prism, the spectrographs allowed the researchers to infer the physical properties of a star — such as mass, radius and temperature — from which the properties of any planets orbiting it can be inferred.These observations represent a natural stepping stone from the K2 mission to NASA’s other upcoming exoplanet missions, such as the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite and James Webb Space Telescope.“This bountiful list of validated exoplanets from the K2 mission highlights the fact that the targeted examination of bright stars and nearby stars along the ecliptic is providing many interesting new planets,” said Steve Howell, project scientist for the K2 mission at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California. “These targets allow the astronomical community ease of follow-up and characterization, providing a few gems for first study by the James Webb Space Telescope, which could perhaps tell us about the planets’ atmospheres.”This work was performed in part under contract with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory funded by NASA through the Sagan Fellowship Program executed by the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute.NASA Ames manages the Kepler and K2 missions for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. JPL in Pasadena, California, managed Kepler mission development. Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corporation operates the flight system with support from the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado at Boulder.For more information on the Kepler and the K2 mission, visit http://www.nasa.gov/keplerFor more information about exoplanets, visit https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/ faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyCitizen Service CenterPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Business News Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Science and Technology NASA’s Kepler Confirms 100+ Exoplanets During Its K2 Mission Published on Monday, July 25, 2016 | 3:47 pmlast_img read more

Rockets hit US embassy in Baghdad amid protests

first_imgIraq has been dragged into a rapiddeterioration in relations between Iran and the US in recent months. No group has claimed responsibilitybut the US blamed Iran-backed military factions in Iraq in the past. At least three people were injured,security sources told Reuters. Demonstrators are seen carrying an image of United States (US) President Donald Trump during a protest aimed at pressuring US troops to leave Iraq. REUTERS Powerful Iraqi Shia cleric Moqtadaal-Sadr organized the anti-American demonstrations aimed at pressuring UStroops to leave Iraq. Recent attacks have targeted theembassy or Iraqi military bases where American troops are deployed.  center_img Baghdad – At least three rockets struck the United States (US) embassy inIraq’s capital Baghdad on Sunday. This included the US killing of thetop Iranian military commander, Gen Qasem Soleimani, by a drone strike on Jan.3 at the Baghdad airport. One rocket hit the embassy cafeteriawhile two others landed a short distance away, a source told AFP. They began withdrawing fromanti-government sit-in camps on Saturday.(BBC)last_img read more