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Counting the Exoplanets

NASAs Kepler Mission team had released details of 10 new planets that have the potential to support life.

• These 10 new planets - rocky, Earth-sized planets - could potentially hold liquid water and can support life. As these planets are outside the solar system, they are called as  Exoplanets .

• Kepler Missionis a space observatory that detects planets by noticing minute drops in the  brightness of a star.

• It was launched in 2009.

• So far, in the Milky Way Galaxy alone it had detected 219 potential exoplanets.

• The new planets discovered orbit their suns in the so called  Goldilocks Zone  or  habitable zone  – a distance from the star where the planet can hold liquid water on its surface and can sustain life.

• Kepler Mission has so far discovered 4,034 potential exoplanets.

• The number of planets that are found to be in the habitable zone rose to 50 with the discovery of new planets.

The telescope detects the presence of planets by registering minuscule drops in a star s brightness.

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