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NASA's exoplanet-hunting TESS has found its first Earth-sized planet

By Polycount ยท 17 replies
Apr 16, 2019
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  1. Last year, NASA launched its latest planet-scanning probe, known as the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS). as the name suggests, the TESS' primary mission is to discover and survey exoplanets, which are planets outside our solar system.

    Specifically, the TESS is looking for Earth-like planets, in the hopes that data it provides can help scientists find worlds that are capable of supporting life; human or otherwise. The TESS' predecessor (the Kepler Space Telescope) ran out of fuel a couple months after the new Satellite launched, making its success all the more important.

    Almost a full year after the start of its mission, the TESS has finally found its first Earth-sized exoplanet: HD21749c. It's not the most inspiring of names, perhaps, but for the purposes of science, it'll do for now.

    Unfortunately, HD21749c may be a bit of a dud when it comes to sustaining life. NASA says the planet is extremely hot due to the proximity of the sun it orbits. H21749c's surface temperatures could be as high as 800 degrees (Fahrenheit).

    Given that its surface is likely to be very rocky and its temperatures are far beyond anything modern humans could withstand, we shouldn't expect to start colonizing the planet any time soon. Still, we look forward to seeing what else the TESS will discover during its hopefully-long life.

    Permalink to story.

  2. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 2,586   +2,305

    I wonder if a refueling mission for Kepler would be feasible.
  3. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 3,567   +1,928

  4. Manrubio

    Manrubio TS Rookie Posts: 40   +11

    I got excited and then I read this : "But it probably can't sustain life".. Not cool techspot. Not cool.
    Reehahs likes this.
  5. Jeff Re

    Jeff Re TS Addict Posts: 139   +103

    If it can't sustain life because it's too close to its star then it's not really an earth-like planet, is it?
  6. Lew Zealand

    Lew Zealand TS Guru Posts: 446   +333

    Kepler didn't need fuel as much as it needed additional functional gyroscopes. While Kepler did run for its official lifespan, NASA has created something of an expectation of excessive longevity with a lot of their recent robotic missions.

    When Kepler's 4th gyro failed shortly after original EOM, that was quite a disappointment. At least the creative people at JPL/NASA kept it going longer with the altered but still valuable K2 extended mission which only needed the last 2 gyros, plus the solar wind.
    mbrowne5061 likes this.
  7. Reehahs

    Reehahs TS Guru Posts: 723   +460

    By their definition, Venus has long been Earth like in terms of size.
    mbrowne5061 likes this.
  8. ShagnWagn

    ShagnWagn TS Guru Posts: 601   +430

    Is it possible they could use the system they just used to take pictures of the black hole on this?
  9. Manrubio

    Manrubio TS Rookie Posts: 40   +11

    Exactly.... This astronomers be calling these exoplanets earthlike planets due to their size and cause they rocky.... Stop it! We already have enough of that.
  10. Lew Zealand

    Lew Zealand TS Guru Posts: 446   +333

    Which astronomers are calling it earthlike?

    Sone of the press is calling it earthlike.
    NASA is correctly describing it as earth-sized.

    Keep the terminology straight.
    mbrowne5061 likes this.
  11. Manrubio

    Manrubio TS Rookie Posts: 40   +11

    The astronomers that I know .
  12. Polycount

    Polycount TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 1,557   +349

    I don't believe the title was misleading (it's literally describing what happened), but I also can't tell if you're joking or not.
  13. Manrubio

    Manrubio TS Rookie Posts: 40   +11

    It is not a misleading tittle , my bad if my comments makes it seems like it.
    I guess I just get too excited when seeing news about new planets being discovered cause' I dont believe that all this ( Universe) exist for just us humans.
  14. Polycount

    Polycount TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 1,557   +349

    No worries, I wanted to open myself up to criticism if there was something wrong with the way I worded it.

    I agree - I think there's definitely life out there somewhere, but I have no idea how long it will take to find it. Hopefully in our lifetimes.
  15. Lew Zealand

    Lew Zealand TS Guru Posts: 446   +333

    Yep, I gotta go with Carl Sagan on this one:

    "The universe is a pretty big place. If it's just us, seems like an awful waste of space."
  16. LeroN

    LeroN TS Enthusiast Posts: 84   +27

    So perhaps somebody is doing the same. Preparing to extend their life somewhere else or leaving a diyng planet or a solar sytem. Also there is a reason to stop humans killing an unique place in the Universe too. Questions are - what they are, how good they are prepared and how far they are ready to go in getting such sweet seat like the Earth? Only that the idea to find Earth-like planets is perfect, sure.
  17. Ean Mogg

    Ean Mogg TS Enthusiast Posts: 99   +40

    I want to know how is finding exoplanets benefiting the human race? as all exoplanets will be impossible to get to with technology we have now and don't tell me we need to see these planets to see how their development will aid our planet ..how ..I'd turn the telescope to the nearest stars first as planets might have moons that are habitable and at least we'd be able to get there with technology on the drawing board now.. I despair at the regular news articles about another earth size planet found at 100 light years away and sigh ...
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2019
  18. tomkaten

    tomkaten TS Maniac Posts: 248   +164

    Nvm, misquote and bad post.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2019

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