It seems like another day goes by and there’s another discovery of more exoplanets! On January 7, just one week into 2013, astronomers from the Kepler Mission Space Observatory announced the discovery of the latest exoplanet, the creatively named KOI-172.02. At this stage it appears that KOI-172.02 is an Earth-like planet candidate orbiting a star similar to our own sun. It almost seems like old news when scientists announce the discovery of a planet orbiting another star in our galaxy!
As at January 15, 2013 a total of 859 such planets have been identified (details can be found here). These are certainly exciting times for astronomers, but just how do astronomers search for exoplanets? Continue reading