The Kepler mission has discovered two new planetary systems that include three super-Earth-size planets in the “habitable zone,” the range of distance from a star where the surface temperature of an orbiting planet might be suitable for liquid water.
The Kepler-62 system has five planets; 62b, 62c, 62d, 62e and 62f. The Kepler-69 system has two planets; 69b and 69c. Kepler-62e, 62f and 69c are the super-Earth-sized planets.
The new planets brings the number of confirmed exoplanets to 861. According to the Planetary Habitability Laboratory, there are now nine potential habitable worlds outside of our solar system, with 18 more potentally habitable planetary candidates found by Kepler waiting to be confirmed. Additionally, astronomers predict there are 25 potentially habitable exomoons.
Here is some of the imagery (sorry, but they are artists concepts!), graphs and video used in today’s briefing about the new discoveries, as well as some some from the
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