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Alien Earths 2 billion of them are out there
MSNBC/Space.com ^ | 03/22/2011 | Charles Q. Choi

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 ...


TOPICS: Astronomy; Chit/Chat; Science
KEYWORDS: galaxy; planets; stars; universe; xplanets
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To: OldDeckHand
I got mine. Now everybody back off.....unless you're hot.

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21 posted on 03/22/2011 3:55:23 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: OldDeckHand
I take it neither of you actually read the article?

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.

22 posted on 03/22/2011 3:55:49 PM PDT by Moonman62 (Half of all Americans are above average. Politicians come from the other half.)
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To: Tax-chick
"Until they land on one, or see it looking Strangely Earthlike - with life and stuff - through a telescope, it’s just a rocky planet orbiting its sun, not an “Alien Earth.”

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.

23 posted on 03/22/2011 3:57:28 PM PDT by OldDeckHand
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To: pepsionice

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.


24 posted on 03/22/2011 3:58:14 PM PDT by Trod Upon (Obama: Making the Carter malaise look good. Misery Index in 3...2...1)
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To: OldDeckHand; trisham
there's a potential for earth-like conditions.

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.

25 posted on 03/22/2011 4:01:28 PM PDT by Tax-chick (Nadie me ama como Jesus.)
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To: OldDeckHand

We already have an alien as pResident.


26 posted on 03/22/2011 4:04:03 PM PDT by StormEye
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To: StormEye
"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".

27 posted on 03/22/2011 4:06:38 PM PDT by OldDeckHand
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To: Retired Greyhound
"It has been said that our planet is perfectly situated in the galaxy (which itself if perfectly situated in the universe) to best observe the cosmos."

Has it? Well, I don't know who said that. But it's silly.

28 posted on 03/22/2011 4:09:28 PM PDT by mlo
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To: OldDeckHand

“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).

hmmm....


29 posted on 03/22/2011 4:10:08 PM PDT by DigitalVideoDude (It's amazing what you can accomplish when you don't care who gets the credit. -Ronald Reagan)
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To: Tax-chick; OldDeckHand
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.

*******************************

Well. That makes three of us, if we include Cathy.

I love science fiction too!

30 posted on 03/22/2011 4:11:07 PM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: Jonty30
"have probably gone dark from our perspective, because radio waves are a fairly primitive technology"

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!

31 posted on 03/22/2011 4:11:11 PM PDT by who_would_fardels_bear
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To: freedumb2003

LOL!


32 posted on 03/22/2011 4:12:16 PM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: Extremely Extreme Extremist
There is...it's called Lazworld.
33 posted on 03/22/2011 4:13:07 PM PDT by JPG ("2012 Can't Come Soon Enough" - Sarah Palin)
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To: who_would_fardels_bear

34 posted on 03/22/2011 4:18:01 PM PDT by Daffynition ( DBKP ~ Death By 1000 Papercuts)
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To: Extremely Extreme Extremist
So is there a planet with just women out there?

Why, yes! Isn't she lovely?


35 posted on 03/22/2011 4:18:19 PM PDT by COBOL2Java (Obama is the least qualified guy in whatever room he walks into.)
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To: Tax-chick
It's possible that I look exactly like Catherine Zeta-Jones. After all, I'm a human female.

You only have to look similar enough to support life. It's a pretty low bar, really. :D

36 posted on 03/22/2011 4:21:35 PM PDT by Oberon (Big Brutha Be Watchin'.)
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To: DigitalVideoDude
"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)."

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?

37 posted on 03/22/2011 4:22:04 PM PDT by OldDeckHand
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To: COBOL2Java

Looks like my mother-in-law. I wonder if that one can cook a meatloaf without burning down the kitchen. Probably not, eh?


38 posted on 03/22/2011 4:23:16 PM PDT by OldDeckHand
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To: Extremely Extreme Extremist

I’ll even settle for green women.


39 posted on 03/22/2011 4:26:03 PM PDT by Lachisula
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To: OldDeckHand

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.


40 posted on 03/22/2011 4:26:47 PM PDT by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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