NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope retires after 9 years of discovering planets
05 November, 2018, 15:14 | Author: Kelly Sanders
"I'm excited about the diverse discoveries that are yet to come from our data and how future missions will build upon Kepler's results". Now, however, the spacecraft has run out of its hydrazine fuel and officially entered retirement.
"Not only did it show us how many planets could be out there, it sparked an entirely new and robust field of research that has taken the science community by storm". Scientists have said that Kepler telescope, which helps in discovering 2,600 planets, has finished fuel, so he is retiring. After completing its primary mission within four years, the spacecraft was repurposed to look at other stars near the zodiacal constellations. Kepler was not the first to do this, but it did take astronomy to new heights, accounting for 70 percent of all exoplanet discoveries. That means that they are located at a distance from the stars that orbit where liquid water, a vital ingredient for life as we know it, can accumulate on the surface of these exoplanets.
It discovered that around 20%-50% of start visible in the night sky are likely to have planets that may well be similar to Earth's own.
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has discovered everything from a cosmic bat shadow to a skull and crossbones nebula, so among all the spooky images it's nice to spot a friendly face. High-quality data from ground-based telescopes requires long observations on the largest telescopes-precious resources that limit the number of planets that can be observed.We now know that there are at least as many planets in the galaxy as there are stars, and many of those planets are quite unlike what we have here in the solar system. By investigating a tiny slice of the sky, Kepler has detected light from many thousands of these stars in its view, and variations in the light received has been an indicator of planets. "There were definitely challenges, but Kepler had an extremely talented team of scientists and engineers who overcame them".
Kepler's replacement - TESS - is already space-borne, and along with the upcoming James Webb Telescope, these platforms are hoped to bring our observations of the universe to a whole new level. Ceres and Vesta are important to the study of distant planetary systems, too, as they provide a glimpse of the conditions that may exist around young stars,"said mission principal investigator Carol Raymond of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in a NASA news release".
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