NASA's Kepler mission has found several new potentially habitable planets orbiting distant stars.
The Kepler spacecraft has been instrumental in the discovery of numerous worlds around distant stars and its latest finds are no exception. Astronomers have identified two new planetary systems known as Kepler-62 and Kepler-69, within which are three planets believed to be super-Earth-size bodies that exist within their star's habitable zone. While it isn't yet possible to tell if these planets are suitable for life, the discoveries offer a tantalizing glimpse of what could one day turn out to be habitable alien worlds.
"The Kepler spacecraft has certainly turned out to be a rock star of science," said NASA's John Grunsfeld. "The discovery of these rocky planets in the habitable zone brings us a bit closer to finding a place like home. It is only a matter of time before we know if the galaxy is home to a multitude of planets like Earth, or if we are a rarity."
"NASA's Kepler mission has discovered two new planetary systems that include three super-Earth-size planets in the "habitable zone," the range of distance from a star where the surface temperature of an orbiting planet might be suitable for liquid water."
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