Skip to comments.Alien Earths — 2 billion of them are out there
Posted on 03/22/2011 3:29:59 PM PDT by OldDeckHand
That's scientists' latest estimate for our galaxy alone, based on Kepler data
Roughly one out of every 37 to one out of every 70 sunlike stars in the sky might harbor an alien Earth, a new study reveals.
These findings hint that billions of Earthlike planets might exist in our galaxy, researchers added.
These new calculations are based on data from the Kepler space telescope, which in February wowed the globe by revealing more than 1,200 possible alien worlds, including 68 potentially Earth-size planets. The spacecraft does so by looking for the dimming that occurs when a world transits or moves in front of a star.
(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...
My impression is that they didn't. The Kepler mission is all about actual observations. Kepler will give us data about where to point even better telescopes in the future.
We can't see gravity, but you concede it exists, right? How do we know it exists? Because we can see its effects. That is EXACTLY how they know these planets exist - through something that is called wobble. Astronomers can detect that wobble, and through some complex calculations (that exceed my ability to explain), the size and distance of the orbiting body can be predicted.
No one is saying these planets resemble earth in every way. But, they are saying they resemble earth in size, and in distance to the star, so that there's a potential for earth-like conditions.
Maybe. On the other hand we might just get a warhead and a big flash. I figure there’s no reason to assume an ET civilization would have any particular regard for us. Lots of resources on Earth.
It's possible that I look exactly like Catherine Zeta-Jones. After all, I'm a human female.
Okay, they have evidence of planets. I'm as big a science fiction fan as the next wife and mother of deranged geeks, but we're not talking a wormhole to Abydos, here.
We already have an alien as pResident.
And, with the size of those ears, there's a reasonable chance he continues to receive his home-world "signals".
Has it? Well, I don't know who said that. But it's silly.
“The spacecraft does so by looking for the dimming that occurs when a world transits or moves in front of a star.”
So, this means that they must have statistics that indicate what percentage of stars have a planetary elliptic that is aligned properly with our star. Unless the elliptic is oriented edge-on with us, not a single ‘world’ orbiting that star would ever transit or move in front of that star (between us and the star).
Well. That makes three of us, if we include Cathy.
I love science fiction too!
What if they use telepathy and some of their thought waves travel here?
Then we won't even need telescopes or radio antennaes. All we'd need to do is listen for the voices in our heads.
Maybe schizophrenics are just better attuned to these telepathic waves.
Or maybe I'm just going crazy!
Why, yes! Isn't she lovely?
You only have to look similar enough to support life. It's a pretty low bar, really. :D
That is an interesting question. The spacecraft is not in earth orbit, but in a trailing solar orbit. But still, the orientation would need to be as you describe for it (an exoplanet) to obscure the view irrespective of the spacecraft's orbit relative to earth.
Wiki's article on Kepler says that the observed star systems are the ones that are on a similar galactic plane as ours - maybe that makes a difference - same plane, same orientation? I don't know. Where's Neil deGrasse Tyson when you need him?
Looks like my mother-in-law. I wonder if that one can cook a meatloaf without burning down the kitchen. Probably not, eh?
I’ll even settle for green women.
I tend to leave things on the stove until they catch fire. Meanwhile, I’m off somewhere, reading or just distracted by something, having wandered away from the kitchen. What can I say? My husband does the cooking at our house. I just warm things up.