Kepler team confirms 26 more planets
The relative sizes of Kepler-discovered planets (pre-January in red, January in green, unverified in purple) and our solar system's planets (blue).
January 26th, 2012
07:37 PM ET

Kepler team confirms 26 more planets

Scientists' list of verified planets is now more than two dozen planets longer, thanks to NASA's Kepler space telescope team.

The Kepler mission has discovered 11 new planetary systems with 26 verified planets in the Cygnus and Lyra constellations, NASA said Thursday.

This nearly triples the number of verified multiple-planet stars that the Kepler mission has discovered, now standing at 17. And it nearly doubles the number of verified planets it has discovered, which now is 61.

Before the Kepler satellite was launched in 2009, scientists knew about perhaps 500 planets outside our solar system "across the whole sky," said Doug Hudgins, Kepler program scientist at NASA.

"Now, in just two years staring at a patch of sky not much bigger than your fist, Kepler has discovered more than 60 planets and more than 2,300 planet candidates," Hudgins said in a news release. "This tells us that our galaxy is positively loaded with planets of all sizes and orbits."

Kepler's primary mission is to search a small patch of our galaxy for planets orbiting in stars' habitable zones (areas where temperatures permit liquid water on planets' surface). But habitable zone or not, the Kepler team is documenting whatever planets it finds.

None of the 26 newly verified planets is in a habitable zone, as each is closer to their star than Venus is to our sun, NASA spokeswoman Michele Johnson said.

The planets, all between 1,000 to 10,000 light years from Earth, range in size from 1.5 times the radius of Earth to larger than Jupiter, with 15 being between the size of Earth and Neptune, NASA said. More study is needed to determine which are rocky and which are gaseous.

Kepler, which is monitoring more than 150,000 stars, identifies possible planets by looking for dips in the stars' brightness caused by crossing planets. At least three crossings and follow-up observations from telescopes on Earth are needed to verify planets.

Each of the newly confirmed planetary systems - named numerically, from Kepler-23 to Kepler-33 - has two to five planets. The discoveries were published in four separate papers in the Astrophysical Journal and the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Thursday's announcement comes about a month after NASA said that the Kepler team found two roughly Earth-sized planets, including one that is the closest to the Earth, in terms of size, in the known universe.

Also last month, the Kepler team said it made its first discovery of a planet in a habitable zone, about 600 light years from Earth.

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Filed under: Discoveries • In Space • Kepler
soundoff (232 Responses)
  1. hkxczuuvm

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    June 20, 2013 at 11:05 am |
  2. guardian angel

    Fantastic points altogether, you just received a new reader. What could you suggest in regards to your put up that you simply made some days ago? Any positive?

    March 31, 2012 at 11:10 am |
  3. Aquahealer

    The Earths location relative to the center of the galaxy is similar to Hawaii's position relative to Europe and the Mid-east where civilization began. We are an island of natives that simply hasn't been discovered yet.

    March 7, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
  4. james darnley

    who cares !!! what is this going to resolve who is it going to help.nobody thats who.we don;t belong going into outer space unless we can solve all the problems on earth first .like kids going hungry and homeless.people needing jobs.people dying from all kinds of things that need to be solved like ms or md or the final waste of the taxpayers money

    January 27, 2012 at 9:43 am |
    • James

      That is a truly limited view of science. The more we learn about the Universe, the more we learn about our world. If everyone took your view, we would never advance. We would all still be living in caves, too worried about sabre-toothed tiger attacks to ever get around to rubbing two sticks together to make fire.

      January 27, 2012 at 10:32 am |
    • Ziggy

      That is a very short-sighted and limiting view of the world. Following your logic, why do anything enjoyable in life – why did I spend $40+ thousands a year in college cost to send my daughter to college, why buy my house when I can use my mortgage and R&M payments to feed the hungry, why did I buy an SUV instead of a bicycle, why eat steak when oatmeal would keep me alive, why drink bottle water when faucet water would do, why spend money on a wedding dress when a simple blouse and skirt would do, etc. By the way, consumer spendings make up 70% of our economy!

      January 27, 2012 at 11:43 am |
      • guest

        Your argument is completely erroneous. What does your irresponsible spending have to do with his opinion on why observing distant planets have no real affect on our own. He is right to a point in the fact that most of the things we observe in space involve a number greater than a million....

        February 15, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
    • barry

      James when the theory of relativity was first discovered you would have said oh that scientist should not be wasting his time thinking about gravity. There is already a cure for hunger in countries like africa its called contraception and I dont mean condoms I mean we should be sending them the pill or the yearly shot, Oh but then this may go against something like stupid religions, go forth and prosper, oh what a load of crap. hungry starving children are usually this way from overpopulation its a sad thing but humanity cannot just keep having children unchecked, well we can but nature has a cure for it.

      July 24, 2012 at 1:09 am |
  5. midogs2

    I believe the universe, and all it's components, is the only subject in the world that everyone is truely fascinated with. I don't see the need to bring faith and religion into this article. That is not the topic at hand.

    January 27, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • ChaoticDreams

      I believe you greatly underestimate the number of morons in this country.

      February 11, 2012 at 7:18 pm |
  6. Garth Bock

    I find it interesting that a great percentage of the planetary systems found have the majority of orbits less than the orbit of Venus. Since Bode's Law is of more coincidence than fact, the question is why are the systems forming that way ? Or is it a error in the way we are viewing them ? Is the transit and doppler method that reliable ? Could we be "squishing " the orbits closer to the star because of our methods ? An even bigger question is why did our system form nice and spread out and all the rest are mashed up against their start ? Or are we seeing just the local neighborhood when those systems have far more planets spread farther out and are harder to detect ?

    January 27, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • Hilikus00

      I think this would be the reason why we have confirmed so many close orbit planets with Kepler –

      "At least three crossings and follow-up observations from telescopes on Earth are needed to verify planets."

      Kepler has been looking for 2 years. If our exact planet was being looked at from the distances we are observing, Earth would have only had two crossings. Even that is assuming that it's orbital path takes it between our observation point and it's home star. It makes sense that what we are finding the most are large, close to their sun planets. A really cool site is You actually try to help pick out crossings from dips in the light waves that the computers may have missed. When you see an example of something that is the size of would be amazed how easy it is to miss.

      January 27, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
  7. Dr. Kolob

    Evidence for where good Mormons go to be Gods.......
    Oops, wrong site.

    January 27, 2012 at 9:29 am |
  8. palintwit

    Astronomers from the famous Sarah Palin Galactic Observatory / Bait Shop have teamed up with engineers from Sarah Palin University and engineers from NASA (that's NASA, not NASCAR you dumb redneck) to develop and launch the world's first orbiting trailer park. It will be modeled after a typical trailer park in the south, which means that some will have indoor plumbing. For more information, you can go to their website... http://www.Operation Teabagger

    January 27, 2012 at 9:19 am |
    • Blake

      to the dude who commented on trailer parks, I find it a little offensive. I have family that live in trailer parks and they don't have much of a choice.

      January 27, 2012 at 11:14 am |
  9. T

    Get us off this rock !
    To go forth and seek out new life and civilizations.....

    January 27, 2012 at 8:56 am |
  10. wills

    the thought of looking for planets excites me more than most things. I would loveto see us in our life time start to travel around in our own solar system. side note try to please stick with the descution of science.

    January 27, 2012 at 8:54 am |
  11. cadmando

    Religion or Science ?? Who cares, we have spent millions of dollars for info that does man kind of no use. We need to get off fossil fuels, we will be over crowded soon if not yet? All this Planet hunting does is help a very few have a very large paycheck to do something that interest them. Lets spend money on getting Mars livable, we can fly there? on getting automobiles & Factories and the such on no emmission and cheap energy use. On creating jobs for all on this planet so we all can have a decent paycheck and support Families.

    January 27, 2012 at 8:47 am |
    • lolsigh

      so finding another habital planet to live on would not help us?
      Why don't you use the internet for its intended purpose, there are several programs such as the life project that can advance us very quickly.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:55 am |
    • A. Goodwin

      The technology created to even LOOK for these planets is cause enough to keep going. These instruments have practical use here on earth!

      January 27, 2012 at 9:27 am |
  12. U.S. Common Sense

    *yawn* Another cool science article ruined by religion bashers. Seriously folks, grow up. The two topics can coexist. Quit trying to destroy the other.

    January 27, 2012 at 8:43 am |
    • Bill Miller

      I agree with you 100%, it is about time someone is using their intellect! Read Genesis 1:1-31 and 2:1-25, in the Bible which states that God created the HEAVENS and the earth and everything on it. Scientists have been discovering and proving the Bible to be correct. So, what the Bible stated over 6000 years ago is correct and proven to be true. Scientist explain that there was a BIG BANG which came from a ball of compressed dust and gas no bigger than the electron of an atom, and the atom itself can not be seen, so scientists created a model to explain its structure. Did you know, according to science, that the electrons that travel around a atom travels the speed of light,roughly 186,000 mps or 300,000 kmp per second. That is like traveling around the earth 7and 1/2 times in one second! Wow! That takes a lot of faith to believe in something that cannot be seen, why it almost sounds like a science fiction or a fairy tale story. The Big Bang happened in a split second and created all of the universe and earth is the same as what God says in the Book of Genesis. I have Faith and I believe it to be true as I have faith that God created the heavens and earth. One last important point to remember, God created Everything including the intellect of the human species. God created Man in his image and gave him the intellect and ability to think, reason, investigate, and reason things out for the human kind. We are given free will to choose and do what we like, including the belief that he sent his only begotten son to serve mankind, suffer for our sins, be crucified, and resurrected from the grave! Like having faith in science, education, doctors, etc, to enter Heaven and be with God Almighty, we must have complete FAITH that Jesus Christ is indeed the true Messiah and our Redeemer! I pray that you will gain FAITH in the Savior and gain eternal life with God in Heaven forever and ever! You have the free will to choose and believe in as you desire, will it be God and heaven or the place where God will be out of your life known as Hell which was really created for Satan and his demonic angels? It is my prayer for all of you to have FAITH in the Messiah. What do you have to lose? Bill

      January 27, 2012 at 10:05 am |
      • I'm The Best!

        Wow bill.. I feel sorry for your kids if you have any. Because I don't think your kind of crazy can ever be cured

        January 27, 2012 at 10:33 am |
      • Ziggy

        Bill, You make a lot of sense. I think religion and science are two sides of the same coin. Thank goodness the founding fathers of America were in charged then, if we had leaders then like we do now, we would not be speaking English and the new nation would not have survived. They were extremely smart, well educated with great foresight!

        January 27, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
      • factoid

        How about a deal? You promise to stop praying for me to gain eternal life, and I will stop thinking about how stupid you are?

        January 28, 2012 at 9:00 am |
      • timmy

        too bad those passages in the bible you quote are nothing more than the words of men....not the words of god.

        January 30, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
  13. Ziggy

    In 2008 the Vatican declared that the existence of ET is not inconsistent with the believe in God. What does the Vatican already know?

    January 27, 2012 at 8:29 am |
    • Turtle42

      Trying to CYA for the inevitable find of life outside Earth in the next hundred years.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:43 am |
    • Ike

      They know that they need to make up claims like that to cover their rear in case extraterrestrial life is found. They will say anything to control the masses and keep their cash cow rolling.

      January 27, 2012 at 9:12 am |
  14. Ziggy

    Science fiction is only technoloby that is beyond what we know today – heavier than air travel was science fiction, jet propulsion was science fiction, super sonic air travel was science fiction, rocket propulsion was science fiction, space travel was science fiction, travel to the moon was science fiction, compters was science fiction, desk top computers was science fiction, cell phone was science fiction, laser was science fiction, guided missile was science fiction, smart bomb was science fiction, existence of black holes was science fiction, the iPad was science fiction, the idea of the smart phone was science fiction, the idea that in less than 40 years, China will become the 2nd largest economy was science fiction, what will we learn tomorrow???

    January 27, 2012 at 8:26 am |
    • Pat

      Science fiction become science fact sooner or later. Whatever we can imagine, we can eventually do.

      January 27, 2012 at 9:38 am |
  15. TechGeekJim

    Does it really come as a surprise that we are likely not alone in this universe? Only a fool would think that. And why is it that people think faith in God and science can't co-exist? I don't remember reading anything in any religious book that makes a claim that we are alone in the universe. It is man's vanity of supremity that causes that illusion, not any belief in God. Do you think beings on other planets believe in a God? Does life on other planets make God any less real? After all, He is the Master of creation. If you choose to believe or not believe, that is a personal choice. But not believing is a religion with as much frenzied members as any other. The only difference is that vehemently cry out about no God, where believers speak about God. Could religion be a relic of historic man's efforts to understand that which he could not? Could religion be a construction of man's attempt to control others? Could religion be a byproduct of long ago alien visitation? All possibilities I suppose that could be argued. But that is why it is called FAITH.

    January 27, 2012 at 8:24 am |
    • anon

      Re: it being foolish to think we're alone. You're right, I doubt many scientists ever thought we were alone. But that's thing about science- we have to prove what we think to be true 😉 We don't go around around just making things up (okay, well maybe theorists do), we go out and find the evidence!

      January 27, 2012 at 8:37 am |
      • Ziggy

        Some of Einstein's greatest ideas were a result of thought experinments.

        January 27, 2012 at 8:46 am |
      • Ziggy

        Great scientists come up with great ideas and let the lesser scientists find the evidence. Einstein did not bother with experinments – what experiments could he have conducted to prove his General Theory of Relativity. So few scientists even understood his theory back then and that is why he did not win the Nobel Prize for it .

        January 27, 2012 at 8:55 am |
      • lolsigh

        ziggy – but he proved it with math, he didn't simply say he is right because he said so like so many people do today.

        January 27, 2012 at 8:57 am |
      • lolsigh

        ziggy – you must be dumb, he did get a nobel prize....

        January 27, 2012 at 9:02 am |
      • Ziggy

        You need to recheck your physics knowledge. Albert Einstein did not receive the Nobel prize for his work on Realativity, he received it for his work on the Photoelectric Effect of light.
        Sometimes, it is better to remain quiet than to say something foolish.

        January 27, 2012 at 9:31 am |
    • Sue

      "Does it really come as a surprise that we are likely not alone in this universe?"

      Likely meaning more than 50% probability? I'd LOVE to see your work.

      Even if, for some reason, you believe that it's more likely than not that there are E.T.I. in the universe, it remains to be seen if it makes any difference whatsoever, now or ever.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:54 am |
  16. Ziggy

    Science without religion is lame and religion without science is blind. Albert Einstein

    January 27, 2012 at 8:22 am |
    • lolsigh

      "The word god is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this", Einstein

      January 27, 2012 at 9:06 am |
  17. All I ask...

    Please. No Uranus jokes, ok?

    January 27, 2012 at 8:21 am |
    • LeRoy_Was_Here

      What if Martians invaded Uranus?

      January 27, 2012 at 9:15 am |
  18. Larry

    What I find really funny is how both sides of the religious/science argument try to discount the other as stupid or soulless, or unable to have faith. There is no reason for the clash. “The lord works in mysterious ways”. Look just because we do not understand something does not make it magical or miraculous. Just because we think we do understand something does not mean that we are right. Science changes it’s tune on subjects all the time as better understanding or new information become available. There is a reason that Christian scientists abound. Many studied and reflected on the empirical data and at some point said hey there is no way to explain this or that with science. For example the history of the planet from its molten beginnings to now has not had life on it for the vast majority of that time however in a relatively short, almost instantaneous time, the planet came to be covered in plant and animal life to include us. With no scientific formula on how to mix up a batch of “life” from nothing it becomes very hard to think that mankind came to be out of some incredibly unlikely sting of random coincidence. The long and short of it is that neither side has all the answers and people that feel they have to argue about how wrong the other side is are only showing that they are narrow minded and biased to their own point of view so badly that they should be ignored by all.

    January 27, 2012 at 8:10 am |
    • lolsigh

      there is a huge difference between facts and faith.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:51 am |
  19. Badly-Bent

    I can't wait for the J.C. Whitney catalog of planetary parts.

    January 27, 2012 at 8:09 am |
    • haarkonen


      January 27, 2012 at 9:09 am |
  20. Ziggy

    I think religion and science are on the same path – searching for the truth and their paths will once again converge.

    January 27, 2012 at 7:51 am |
    • bill.x

      yes, broadly speaking in the sciences. but individually it happens with more frequency every day. i.e you do not have to have an overly developed mind and thought process to understand the truth. just one small step.

      January 27, 2012 at 7:55 am |
    • DarkVader

      Far out dude. Like profound. But, I think not.

      January 27, 2012 at 7:56 am |
    • Sabetudo

      same path, however science looks for evidence and religion counts on an ignorant faith....they never did and will never converge....sorry.

      January 27, 2012 at 7:59 am |
      • bill.x

        yes, sicence looks for physical evidence, which only exist in the physical world – so in that sense, they will not converge.

        January 27, 2012 at 8:02 am |
      • Maff

        Sadly, you and those who study science are just as ignorant as those who follow religion. Facts with no answers verus answers with no facts. We're all in the same boat. You'll leave this earth just as ignorant as you came in.

        January 27, 2012 at 8:15 am |
    • lolsigh

      Not sure how religion is looking for the truth, they believe they already found it and no one can tell them differently.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:53 am |
      • Ziggy

        Unfortunately, religion can end up getting corrupted over time for control and politcal purposes. Read the Gospel of Thomas – it is facinating reading as it is a dictation of Jesus' sayings. It was a challenge to Church control and it was excluded from the New Testament. God is within us!

        January 27, 2012 at 9:01 am |
      • lolsigh

        ziggy – It is still writing with no proof or verification of actual facts, it is fictional book.
        I would not believe harry potter to be real.

        January 27, 2012 at 9:09 am |
      • Maff

        you should be embarrassed of your comments. You dont know what a fact is. As if there are so many of them. You cant prove everything in the science books yourself. Maybe a scientist can, and then you can take him at his word (faith), but you yourself have not conducted thousands of tests in a lab and out in the field to varify for yourself that everything you believe is true. You have simply taken it out of the mouth of another and accepted it as truth or fact. The theories that are out there are based on "facts" that are independent, yet strung together to create a picture of what "may" be true. Its theory, and people believe it as theory. its ok to believe "theories" based on "facts" that you yourself have not and in some cases cannot varify? Theories you personally have not varified, that are based on facts that you have not personally varified. Then you die, just like a religious man. What is the real difference? "facts facts facts! yay!! I had facts!!" So what your dead now. wake up dummy. American history, world history, alot of technical sciences and theoretical sciences, general knowledge and everything else that makes up an individuals world view is based in faith. Unless you were the here for billions of years and got to see everything happen, and happened to have the capacity to comprehend it all. Thats not you. so wake up. EVERYBODY LIVES IN FAITH!!!

        January 27, 2012 at 9:43 am |
    • Sue

      Again? Whan was the last time?

      January 27, 2012 at 9:02 am |
      • Ziggy

        The 17th and 18th century.

        January 27, 2012 at 11:02 am |
  21. Ziggy

    Do you think that other world aliens are already among us and are working with the governments on Earth and much of our current technological devices are built from knowledge that they provided?

    January 27, 2012 at 7:48 am |
    • Al

      We are here more for the amusement factor, you make us smile!

      January 27, 2012 at 7:55 am |
    • Sabetudo

      nope . . .you watch too much science fiction . . . got it science FICTION.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:00 am |
      • Ziggy

        Science fiction is only technoloby that is beyond what we know today – heavier than air travel was science fiction, jet propultion was science fiction, super sonic air travel was science fiction, rocket propultion was science fiction, space travel was science fiction, travel to the moon was science fiction, compters was science fiction, desk top computers was science fiction, cell phone was science fiction, laser was science fiction, guided missile was science fiction, smart bomb was science fiction, existence of black holes was science fiction, the iPad was science fiction, the idea of the smart phone was science fiction, what will be learn tomorrow???

        January 27, 2012 at 8:20 am |
      • Ziggy

        Correcting typos – Science fiction is only technoloby that is beyond what we know today – heavier than air travel was science fiction, jet propulsion was science fiction, super sonic air travel was science fiction, rocket propulsion was science fiction, space travel was science fiction, travel to the moon was science fiction, compters was science fiction, desk top computers was science fiction, cell phone was science fiction, laser was science fiction, guided missile was science fiction, smart bomb was science fiction, existence of black holes was science fiction, the iPad was science fiction, the idea of the smart phone was science fiction, the idea that in less than 40 years, China will become the 2nd largest economy was science fiction, what will we learn tomorrow???

        January 27, 2012 at 8:27 am |
    • Brad

      I guess it could be a possibility, however, I think humans do not need help, I think our brains are more than capeable of discovery and invention. To pass that off to aliens is belitteling to the human race.

      January 27, 2012 at 9:19 am |
  22. oops, reality slipped in

    ..over 100 billion stars in our galaxy alone and there are far more planets than stars.

    No doubt there must be life somewhere out there, and based on our newness, they likely had a million plus year jump on technology.

    Can you imagine a bunch of aliens coming here about 2,000 years ago, one saying to the other 'Do you want to play a jesus joke here too?'

    January 27, 2012 at 7:26 am |
    • H Manuel Montes


      January 27, 2012 at 8:31 am |
    • Sue

      "Billions" of chances mean nothing if you don't know how likely an event is. ETI may well have a probability of 1/10^300 per planet per lifetime of the planet, so even with billion billion planets the expected yield is still zero, earth notwithstanding. We just don't know.

      January 27, 2012 at 9:09 am |
    • Maff

      funny. People will choose anything over God. aliens could have created us, but not God. we could have evolved from nothing at all. But it cant be God. We could be God!!!...But God cant be God. Why so much hate towards God?

      January 27, 2012 at 10:07 am |
      • timmy

        no one hates your god....we just hate people like you who think they have all of the answers.

        January 30, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
  23. bill.x


    bill, i agree generally that many are anti faith, meaning no belief in god. i try staying away from saying religion, because that is generally an organized structure of like minded people who through custom, history and sometimes race define a god they prefer and ways of relating to god. i believe, i know, that however all religions whorship god, that there is only one god viewed by different perspective. beanith the realm of belief there is the physical world, as universal intelligence, which includes our relationship connection with god, is filtered through our mind. a mind that can believe it is the end state, and that nothing exist before it. that is the seperation with god that the majority of the world population exists in today, but it is changing. and, there are many scientist and other professions, albert einstein for examle, who understood god and faith, and functioned very well, using his mind/physical world beautifully to help others as best he could without denying the truth of who we really are.

    January 27, 2012 at 7:06 am |
    • gene1o

      Count on it – ANYONE claiming to "know" and be able to "teach" will soon have his/her hand outstretched to collect money!

      January 27, 2012 at 7:33 am |
  24. Trajk Logik

    Hmmm. I wonder why a god would make all these uninhabitable planets. All this space in which we cannot survive seems like a lot of wasted space, or that the universe was not made "just right" for us.

    January 27, 2012 at 6:58 am |
    • Maff

      God made us for his pleasure. So maybe he made those planets for his pleasure

      January 27, 2012 at 8:20 am |
      • lolsigh

        why would a god need to pleasure himself?
        why would a god need worship?
        Why would a god need to be feared?

        Sounds like a man to me.

        January 27, 2012 at 9:04 am |
    • André

      God is imaginary. It's a delusion.

      And a delusion is a mental disorder. Get help.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:25 am |
      • Maff

        get help because i believe in God? Is something bad going to happen to me? I feel fine. Thanks

        January 27, 2012 at 9:20 am |
  25. Mike

    This is only news to the members of the Flat Earth Society.
    The rest of us have known for quite some time that the stars are full of planets.

    January 27, 2012 at 6:33 am |
  26. Bill

    Funny how many people are taking shots at religion, and then lining up at the altar of NASA to faithfully believe whatever claims are made by the agency. If a majority of followers exhibit religious behavior, can we call NASA-Worship a religion?

    January 27, 2012 at 4:35 am |
    • rudy

      the thing is, this NASA worship as you describe it is just witnessing Reality. -as apposed to Faith. or any other lingering form of hand me down mysticism indoctrination from cave man to present.

      January 27, 2012 at 4:50 am |
      • ITellyouWhat

        Finite Universe – zero and one are equal (matter can be infinitely divided into nothing – God is Nothing that created everything out of emptiness) "At the Planck distance and the Planck time all physics, as we know it today collapses. This is the reason we call the beginning of the big bang a singularity. You cannot apply ordinary reasoning there. Zero and one have no sense there.OK?" J-P Burri w.BigBang.o There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that the Big Bang views one and zero as being equal, since it states that zero appeared out of the absence of zero; then zero created something. Many scientists believe or have faith that light does not have mass, thus they believe the Universe is Finite. Religion promotes the most commonly accepted idea of the group. If light does not have mass, then it would be impossible to move an electron. Light described as a particle means nothing, if it has no mass since it would be impossible to distinguish from nothing because no mass means void of substance. If it has no substance, then nothing is present to distinguish the particle from other particles.
        The Big Bang theory prevents any condition where something has always been. Infinity is defined as the difference between one and zero. Once one and zero are the same according to the big bang, the definition of infinity as stated above is no longer valid. If the big bang occurred, all math's must deal with the proof of 0=1.

        This is evidence for a mathematical proof defining zero and one as equal. Currently, math and physics before the Big Bang and after it do not relate. Why should this spectacular random singularity be left out of current proofs, since it is such an important event? It is not that it is a singularity, it is a random singularity. This is the reason no end date to the Universe has ever been given. This theory that nothing created everything including the singularity that caused the big bang works well for atheists, since they believe that nothing is in control and some creationists agree with the idea that God created everything. However, considering that it defines God as nothing they aren't promoting it in church. Nothing and Emptiness are not the same; according to this universe nothing has power over emptiness, since nothing created everything out of emptiness. Could zero be equal to one only under certain mathematical conditions? No. Not according to the Big Bang Theory. It states that nothing created everything that exists in the Universe. Steven Hawking states that nothing can continue to create even more. So, the Big Bang theory prevents any condition where something has always been. Emptiness is proven not to exist based on its own definition. Emptiness is the absence of space, time, matter, and energy, thus no test can be done to determine its existence. It is common knowledge that substances which are finite have predictable endings. To even begin to publicly claim that the Universe was finite without being able to give a predictable ending shows a lack of self discipline and general education. If the big bang occurred, then there would be major miracles associated with it which are explained in our book. Miracles require faith and religion promotes the ideas associated with the belief. However, to prove the big bang researchers have invested heavily in particle accelerators. These accelerators cool particles then smash them. The particle they are trying to destroy or change into nothing is called the God particle .nationalgeographic2008/03/god-particle/achenbach-text . When atomic nuclei smash together, the goal is to examine the exotic particles that result. Like dismantling a car engine to figure out how it works. The Higgs Boson or God particle is the missing evidence in a theory that explains how fundamental particles acquire mass. Thus the plan is to try and smash the God particle apart creating energies and temperatures not seen since the universe’s earliest moments, then determine how it fits back together is the goal.

        January 27, 2012 at 8:06 am |
      • Turtle42

        ITellYouWhat...That is one of the most distressing examples of circular reasoning, subjective fact-picking, and misunderstanding of physics and mathmatics that I've seen all week.

        January 27, 2012 at 8:48 am |
    • Andrew

      What the hell are you smoking? Cause it sure isn't pot. "Altar of NASA", seriously? It may come as a shock to you, but scientists don't publish this stuff out of nowhere, there's actually research done. What's more, you can read it for yourself!

      If you would have bothered to track down the source (Which CNN should have done for you, but they're usually pretty bad about citations) you'd have found that on the Kepler mainpage, they have a link to the news. On that link, they list the papers published.

      So if you were really interested, you could track down the actual articles providing the results, you could see how they did it for yourself.

      But instead you parrot some insane notion of some kinda NASA conspirisy about... well... nothing. I don't understand what possible motives any of the researchers would have in faking data about something so minor as extrasolar planets.

      Before you start, it's not that I take this kinda stuff on faith, I've done some (very easy and very trivial) work on Hubble data, which felt really cool, and just about my favorite professor was a researcher on WMAP, I've seen the pictures of him in clean suits working on components for the satellite. This isn't some government conspiricy of scientists publishing results for the sake of publishing results, these are real people who do truly incredible things to try to teach us more about the universe we live in.

      People like you who simply say 'alter of 'NASA' have in comparison very small minds indeed.

      January 27, 2012 at 5:56 am |
      • H Manuel Montes

        Here Here! Bravo>

        January 27, 2012 at 9:02 am |
      • Maff

        aaahhaahahahaha. Calm down man. If you know everything for certain thats great. There is nothing wrong with the discovery of planets. The mans point was that alot of people, unlike you, do take their "facts" on faith. They dont do real research(like you). They either hear about it, or read an article then absorb it into their world view... as fact. They are posers that just want to roll with the intellectual crowd and bash religious people for exhibiting the same faith that they themselves possess. That was the point. If you cant agree that these people exist, you are simply turning a blind eye to these posers and in doing so encourage them.

        January 27, 2012 at 9:57 am |
    • bill.x

      bill, i agree generally that many are anti faith, meaning no belief in god. i try staying away from saying religion, because that is generally an organized structure of like minded people who through custom, history and sometimes race define a god they prefer and ways of relating to god. i believe, i know, that however all religions whorship god, that there is only one god viewed by different perspective. beanith the realm of belief there is the physical world, as universal intelligence, which includes our relationship connection with god, is filtered through our mind. a mind that can believe it is the end state, and that nothing exist before it. that is the seperation with god that the majority of the world population exists in today, but it is changing. and, there are many scientist and other professions, albert einstein for examle, who understood god and faith, and functioned very well, using his mind/physical world beautifully to help others as best he could without denying the truth of who we really are.

      January 27, 2012 at 7:03 am |
    • Trajk Logik

      Uh, NASA is providing evidence, hard evidence, in which anyone can verify or falsify. In your everyday life you also require hard evidence to believe someone's political claim, etc., so why would you throw that out the window when it comes to religious claims? The religious only believe what they want to based on emotion and assumptions. They pick and choose what parts of the religious texts they want to follow and which they want to ignore. Believe me, I know, as I was a born again, baptized Christian who converted after actually researching science & philosophy, and asking hard questions about god.

      January 27, 2012 at 7:04 am |
      • Maff

        what claims have you verified or falsified from nasa?

        January 27, 2012 at 8:28 am |
      • open.your.eye

        hey this poster named"rick" down a little from your post talks about Jesus saying he didnt want to be worshiped as God and actually was just a great man trying to lead people in the paths of peace and love. Well his post didnt say all that but thats how i feel. you being a person of intelect in both judahism origin ( wich not 6000 years wherever i just read that lol) and real science and philosophy . do you think there is anyway to explain this to religion so they no yeah jesus was real he was great he maybe "prayed/meditated" constantly to get the state of DMT and open the other parts of his mind like we still havent fully understood how to accomplish today{maybe for best} and used these "powers" to heal and help but not to be worshiped as God this wasnt what he wanted the bible states that.... Religion is really why our evolution is so behind where it should be... Why isnt there a way for all to come together and just see with common sense that the BIBLE is a book of rules intertwind with great teachings that follow love but also a undertone of evil to scare you into believe in when the end comes arounnd a sum of us die as martyers for the name jesus which makes it easier for the population to be depleted if they are dying in faith that the will have tangible Golden manshions in heaven ( MATERIAL MEAN NOTHING IN HEAVEN) i just cant understand where common sence has been forgotten? I want people to all understand that the universe is HUGE its not just planet earth and our galaxy as people are finally realizing but can we go through this change of understanding together without causing a huge war? THAT SHOULD BE ALL OUR GOAL. if we let religion and personal beleifs though miscrued and crazy some are then we arent individuals anymore we can COEXIST !! its all for LOVE and progression in love..

        February 7, 2012 at 11:23 am |
    • Maff

      Thank you for your comment. This logic can set people free from their ignorance. there are more lovers of science than scientist. They simply believe it by faith. Many of them, ironically, hate God, religion and "faith" for the ignorance of it. quite silly

      January 27, 2012 at 8:25 am |
    • lolsigh

      sorry but fact and faith are 2 different things, you can prove facts but not faith.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:59 am |
      • Maff

        But faith holds the same weight. You can live on facts, and I can live on faith. We both die. So it does not matter. But your fact dont mean anything. It doesnt give any advantages over me. It doesnt make you better than me. You can feel that your smarter than me, but what you feel doesnt matter once we are dead either. So facts and faith, science and religion, it at ends (for you) when you die.

        January 27, 2012 at 9:24 am |
  27. sapsxy

    well f.u. alien for not showing up .I'll wipe you're tiny ass back into black hole !!!

    January 27, 2012 at 2:10 am |
    • cacalips

      No we found it, it is there, but it requires intelligence to see them. You are one of the unfortunate humans with zero intelligence that cannot see / understand. Don't worry little builder, there is a task for you somewhere.

      January 27, 2012 at 3:42 am |
  28. Tr1Xen

    Do you ever wonder if there are scientists out there looking back through a telescope at us and wondering if there's life here?

    January 27, 2012 at 1:17 am |
    • Rob

      Don't you mean “intelligent’ life here? 🙂 And yes even being from here I wonder about if all the time.

      January 27, 2012 at 7:45 am |
  29. Paradox

    You religious nuts please stop posting your insane diatribes on factual scientific articles, and I promise not to "think" in your church... deal?

    January 27, 2012 at 12:58 am |
    • latenite

      No deal. Intolerant condescending types like yourself don't have a monopoly on free speech, or on the facts:

      January 27, 2012 at 2:52 am |
      • Aaron

        The page full of statistics you linked to is, unfortunately, completely wrong. The problems fall generally into four categories: items that are irrelevant to life (e.g. galaxy size); items which allow for great variance which life can adapt to (e.g. star size); correlated items, meaning you can't combine their probabilities directly as they influence each other (so if one exists, the other likely does as well, e.g.); and finally items which are indeed less common than the alternative, but which given billions of planets are certain to be found. The results are rubbish, but they adhere to your preconceived notion of what should be, and therefore you accept it.

        January 27, 2012 at 5:29 am |
      • factoid

        I can put together a similar list of events described in your favorite religious book that you worship, and assign to them a probability ranking. It would look something like this:

        event1 0.0
        event2 0.0
        eventN 0.0

        Ant then I would calculate the overall probability of your religion being actual and real. It would be 0%.

        Get it?

        January 27, 2012 at 8:27 am |
  30. rad666

    Road trip.

    January 27, 2012 at 12:25 am |
    • Tr1Xen

      A very, very, VERY long one!! lol

      January 27, 2012 at 1:13 am |
  31. thes33k3r


    January 26, 2012 at 11:56 pm |
  32. Kotn

    The religious know there is other life besides what exists on this planet. They know there was life before life on Earth

    January 26, 2012 at 10:56 pm |
    • JoJo

      You must have a very loose definition of the word "know".

      January 26, 2012 at 11:09 pm |
    • VegasRage

      The religious are guessing like everyone else is.

      January 26, 2012 at 11:12 pm |
      • Tr1Xen

        Yep. The religious also "know" there's an invisible being in the sky who is all-knowing and all-powerful and rewards and punishes according to his whim. Clever bunch, those religious people! LOL

        January 27, 2012 at 12:50 am |
      • Maff

        Thank you for you comment. I love honesty. Just like everyone else. NO ONE KNOWS (in the true sense of the word "know")

        January 27, 2012 at 10:15 am |
    • fimeilleur

      Prove it.

      January 26, 2012 at 11:15 pm |
    • Johanna

      You made it sound like you were talking about Aliens, I know you were talking about God, Jesus, and the billions, and billions of beautiful Angels. They don't live on this planet, but they control this planet. They let Satan and his pee- ons (demons-fallen angels) do things that are prophesied to happen in the future. They already know what is going to happen, just like Jesus does. I hope you come back and read this. Also you can learn about end-times, at amazing Pastor Doug Batchelor does a amazing job explaining all of it to you and others....Johanna

      January 27, 2012 at 12:18 am |
      • fimeilleur

        Too bad he doesn't have any credible evidence to back up his claims. Move along...

        January 27, 2012 at 12:31 am |
      • Tr1Xen

        *peons =) ...And I rest my case.

        January 27, 2012 at 12:51 am |
      • Paradox

        "pee -ons" ROFL

        January 27, 2012 at 1:00 am |
    • g01851

      Scientologists? LOL!

      January 27, 2012 at 12:24 am |
    • DarkVader

      Life before life? "They" know that?

      January 27, 2012 at 8:02 am |
  33. sybaris

    Won't be long now until people will say, "Remember when we all bought into that religious stuff?"

    January 26, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
    • loki301

      Never! Jesus shall be worshipped for all eternity. What the world could really use right now is mandatory prayer and bible instruction in all schools from start to finish. That would solve a lot of problems.

      January 27, 2012 at 12:14 am |
      • g01851

        That may upset people who follow other religions... just a thought.

        January 27, 2012 at 12:23 am |
      • Johanna

        I totally agree about Bible studies back in school. Satan won't allow it. They are taking (In God we trust) off the One dollar bill! this is such a sad world, there is NO future here for us or Satan and his pee-ons, or his human followers!!!!!

        January 27, 2012 at 12:24 am |
      • Rick

        no once did Jesus call on us to worship him like a god...on the contray Jesus called on us to worship God not you ever read the bible for yourself?

        January 27, 2012 at 12:25 am |
      • fimeilleur

        You are no better than theTaliban... and equally religitarded. Good bye.

        January 27, 2012 at 12:34 am |
      • RonDeezle

        Wow, loki. You and Johanna sound insane!

        January 27, 2012 at 12:36 am |
      • Paradox

        Religion is the ROOT cause of ALL evil. Keep that garbage to yourself.

        January 27, 2012 at 12:45 am |
      • TheMotivator

        There is nothing wrong with worshiping your god, and certain texts are good guidelines to help you in life. though I'm not really a religious person myself, beacause I feel it is useless and corrupt as all hell, since it was created by MAN, not GOD(by god I refer to whatever higher power you believe in). Here's a link to a youtube video made by a young man with a good eye for things(in my opinion), watch or not, your choice, quite eye-opening though. It's only 4:04 too. and no, it's not me.

        January 27, 2012 at 3:06 am |
      • Dave

        Duchebag, mandatory prayer DOES occur on this planet. It's called being muslim. I have no issue with Musims or any of those wanting to dedicate themselves to required prayer.....but the fact that you just proved how delusional you are and unwilling to admit that your "ideas" of solving problems by making prayer mandatory COMPLETELY mimick those that you obviously hate, makes me chuckle...(and quiver).

        January 27, 2012 at 4:23 am |
      • Ryan

        Hopefully you mean that it should be required when studying fictional literature right?

        January 27, 2012 at 11:02 am |
    • m5

      cant wait! getting really tired of all the crazy talk

      January 27, 2012 at 12:22 am |
      • Bob836


        January 27, 2012 at 12:28 am |
  34. Urantia Revelation

    Check out this book for accurate information about the Unvierse – Urantia-. You can read it online at and come join the discussion about this revelation given to mankind from diety at Enjoy 🙂

    January 26, 2012 at 10:46 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      Guess your perfect god had to update his perfect book so that it's in line with the facts. Huh?

      January 26, 2012 at 11:01 pm |
      • Urantiarevelation

        Thats exactly it actually . It is an updated version of the bible directly given from diety that explains all the error's from previous revelations.

        January 26, 2012 at 11:58 pm |
      • fimeilleur

        If your god is perfect, how'd he make a mistake like the bible? Truthfully, you're just making this sh!t up as you go along, aren't you?

        January 27, 2012 at 12:36 am |
      • Mike

        Did he use Microsoft Word, a ballpoint pen and paper, or did he just carve the edits into the side of a mountain with his lightning bolts?

        January 27, 2012 at 8:38 am |
    • Dave

      spamvertiser !!!!!

      January 26, 2012 at 11:21 pm |
    • haarkonen

      "accurate"? snort.

      January 27, 2012 at 9:12 am |
  35. Navin johnson

    Circling Uranus looking for Klingons....

    January 26, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
    • jar jar binx

      Why is it that a planet has to be the same size of earth and within an exact range from the sun to be habitable? Maybe there is intellegent life that has adapted to live in conditions just like life that exists near extreme heat like at the vents at the bottom of the ocean.

      January 26, 2012 at 10:43 pm |
      • Peacefrog

        Well lets hope there's intelligent life on other planets because based on comments like thor's, there apparently isn't any here on Earth.

        January 26, 2012 at 11:46 pm |
      • Dude

        It doesn't.

        The kind of chemistry needed for life occurs in water. So A planet needs to be in a temperature range where there is liquid water. This can happen in a variety of ways. The distance to the star depends on the type of star, the size of the planet, the type of atmosphere etc.

        There is believed to be liquid water as far from the sun as Jupiter's moons. The gravitational stress Jupiter keeps the core molten. The surface is solid ice. Between the two there will be liquid water in every temperature range. Add ammonia and sulfur gasses and you have the conditions of a thermal vent on earth. And there is life at the thermal vents.

        January 26, 2012 at 11:47 pm |
      • Henry

        Actually it doesn't. The range is based on the size and temp of the star the planet orbits. Size does matter to some degree because most large planets tend to be gas giants but last year they did find a Jupiter sized planet that is not a gas giant.

        January 27, 2012 at 12:06 am |
      • amphiox

        It doesn't. But the type of life that likes a planet the size and temperature range of earth is the type of life we know the best, and would be the type of life we could most easily recognize if we observed signs of its activity elsewhere. Therefore it makes sense to focus our limited research resources on the avenues of investigation that give us the very best chance of success. Anything else would just be randomly casting about in the dark hoping to get lucky.

        January 27, 2012 at 12:49 am |
    • Teenpower

      Why is it that a planet has to be the same size of earth and within an exact range from the sun to be habitable? Maybe there is intellegent life that has adapted to live in conditions just like life that exists near extreme heat like at the vents at the bottom of the ocean.

      January 26, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
      • Urantiarevelation

        Check out this book for accurate information about the Unvierse – Urantia-. You can read it online at and come join the discussion about this revelation given to mankind from diety at Enjoy 🙂

        January 26, 2012 at 10:48 pm |
  36. Adam

    Just imagine, if religion hadn't set scientific advancement back by 500 years during the dark ages, we could potentially have been exploring these new planets already.

    January 26, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Robert

      Earth First! We'll log the other planets later.

      January 26, 2012 at 10:33 pm |
      • illuminaughty

        dont you first...we will destroy those other planets later

        January 27, 2012 at 12:05 am |
    • Jessy

      Blasphemy! You must be a witch! Witches must be burned or the truth might get out there!

      February 24, 2012 at 7:32 pm |
  37. spacenutz

    Convert the heathens!!! Start broadcasting Pat Robertson on all frequency. Maybe they will send money so they can be saved.

    January 26, 2012 at 10:01 pm |
    • Dave

      all frequencies ? (and yes after the word "all" one uses plural forms) – there are infinite frequencies. Your odd request is impossible.

      January 26, 2012 at 11:22 pm |
    • loki301

      Amen to that! Pat is the man. His thoughts and opinions could go a long way to straightening out this vile world, if only we would just heed him.

      January 27, 2012 at 12:31 am |
      • fimeilleur

        send Pat another 1,000,000 to build a new temple to God, or God will kill him (again)... right... that fraudster...

        January 27, 2012 at 12:39 am |
  38. JoJo

    I don't see much evidence of intelligent life on OUR planet, let alone elsewhere.

    January 26, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
    • wavejump1100

      stop looking in the mirror

      January 26, 2012 at 9:16 pm |
      • JoJo

        I rest my case.

        January 26, 2012 at 10:48 pm |
    • LOL

      OH DAM!

      January 26, 2012 at 9:33 pm |
    • Martin

      go study an ant colony, a humming bird, or a black widow spider for a start

      January 26, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
    • JamesKPolk

      in defense of JoJo, I believe (s)he's talking about the GOP party/debates... muhahaha

      January 26, 2012 at 9:48 pm |
      • jon

        Haha I know what you mean. I was watching the debate then got so tired of hearing Mitt and Newt say such nonsense that I clicked here. Those idiots talk like poor Israel gets attacked by Palestinians so much... 20 times more Palestinians have been killed than Israel.. It's like they're living on one of these new planets we discovered.

        January 26, 2012 at 10:01 pm |
      • JoJo

        Yeah, I should have realized the GOP debate provides a very low-biased sample.

        January 26, 2012 at 10:55 pm |
    • amphiox

      JoJo, first define "intelligent".

      January 27, 2012 at 12:53 am |
  39. lily

    watch the sky at night you will see amazing stuff

    January 26, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
    • oliver

      i wish i could, but the new housewives of something something is somewhere on TV.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:27 pm |
    • J

      No aliens.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:35 pm |
    • Spelling Nazis should die

      Too many stinking lights in my area. Have to drive half an hour to get full darkness. Boy I miss living as a country boy. You could see the most unreal things at night. Now ... blah.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:40 pm |
    • Ryan

      Look into my neighbors window at night – now THAT is some amazing stuff !!!!

      January 26, 2012 at 11:23 pm |
  40. oliver

    cool. finally something worthwhile reading instead that GOP garbage that america so loves.

    January 26, 2012 at 9:09 pm |
    • Spelling Nazis should die

      Yes but you do realize that should intelligent life be found while a Republican is in office we are more than likely looking at a interstellar War?

      January 26, 2012 at 9:41 pm |
  41. wavejump1100

    while i find all these newly discovered planets very exciting, i am saddened by the overwhelming distances between us and them. unless we find a way to vastly exceed the speed of light or somehow "warp" space, earthlings will never be able to set foot on even one of the billions of planets out there in other solar systems never mind other galaxies

    January 26, 2012 at 9:01 pm |
    • Duke

      Well the speed of light is a fundamental limit – it cannot be crossed.

      January 26, 2012 at 11:25 pm |
      • David

        Uh, we broke the light barrier MONTHS ago, where have you been? lol

        January 27, 2012 at 12:12 am |
    • JoJo

      As a first step, we're going to have to get rid of that 55 mph speed limit!

      January 26, 2012 at 11:30 pm |
    • amphiox

      Never is a very, very, very long time to make such certain pronouncements.

      There is more than one way to skin this cat, as it were.

      We could make breakthrough discoveries in propulsion and break the lightspeed barrier (or even approach it – at relativistic speeds the journey to a star several hundred lightyears away might take several hundred years from the perspective of those who remain on earth, but from the perspective of those on board it would only take a few months, thanks to time dilation).

      We could make breakthroughs in life support systems that allow us to build a generation-type colony ship, and send it on a several thousand year voyage (the ship itself would essentially BE a new colony of humanity, with its own government and history and so forth, the moment it leaves earth).

      We could make breakthroughs in medicine/life extension (or the singularity), allowing individuals to live for thousands of years. Some of these individuals might then decide to go on interstellar voyages.

      January 27, 2012 at 12:58 am |
  42. Thezel

    One step at a time folks! Planets around other stars is one thing; more intelligent life is another. don't forget humans have only been on this planet an extremely small amount of time compared to the age of the planet.. Finding DNA components in comets is cool though.

    January 26, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
  43. Chris

    It's entirely possible that most sentient life in the universe has given up on travel to other planets as being not worth the effort. More important to them is to live in harmony on their own speck of dust. What a concept! Getting along.

    January 26, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
    • plato101

      It is entirely possible that no other intelligent life exist. In fact, there may not be any life at alll beyond our own planet, as we have no understanding of how life begins.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
      • Richard

        Hopefully this additional knowledge will slowly bring people to realize that we as persons are not the center of the universe, or even our planet, any more than people once believed that our little "blue speck" was the center of all that existed. Wonder if "God" wrote a book for the other planets?

        January 26, 2012 at 9:40 pm |
      • sybaris

        Fortunately there are people who understand chemistry and biology.

        January 26, 2012 at 10:55 pm |
      • Marine5484

        There are more stars in the universe then there are grains of sand on Earth and as we are discovering that many of these stars have planets orbiting them. Even if the .1% of a chance that a planet has life that still leaves millions of planets that can harbor life.

        January 26, 2012 at 11:08 pm |
      • Jessy

        Unfortunately there is no intelligent life on this planet either.

        February 24, 2012 at 7:29 pm |
  44. Chris

    What if most alien civilizations haven't had war or violence in thousands of years or more? What if Earth is the Eric Harris of our galactic neighborhood?

    January 26, 2012 at 8:45 pm |
  45. Andrew Carlisle

    I used to have doubts about the Drake equation... but I think im a believer now

    January 26, 2012 at 8:19 pm |
    • RillyKewl

      I got your drake equation right here. http://www.pbs. org/wgbh/nova/space/drake-equation.html
      Now you can play at home!

      January 26, 2012 at 8:25 pm |
    • wavejump1100

      does the drake equation determine how many cupcakes a person could eat in a lifetime?

      January 26, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
    • plato101

      The Drake equation is based on assumptions that are completely arbitrary, a mathematical musing. The process of the creation of life is a mystery, so it is not possible to assign a credible probability to it.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:17 pm |
      • Me

        What's your point?

        January 26, 2012 at 11:29 pm |
      • amphiox

        The Drake Equation is a research project. It tells us what variables whose values we NEED TO KNOW if we want to answer the question of how many other intelligent civilizations are out there at this moment in our galaxy, with whom we might have a chance of contact.

        We know the first value (rate of star formation in our galaxy) quite well. We are now working on the second value (number of planets).

        The Drake Equation is not an answer to any question. It IS THE QUESTION.

        January 27, 2012 at 1:01 am |
  46. RillyKewl

    Yippee. It only gets more awesome, the more we know.
    Fascinating. I hope we eventually find something approximating at least plant life, or microbial life.
    But I'll take water, for now.

    January 26, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
    • wavejump1100

      i think we will find microbial life on mars, underground or in a cave, just not on the surface

      January 26, 2012 at 9:13 pm |
  47. Shawn

    The Western world 1 and the Islamic....well....turmoil

    January 26, 2012 at 8:06 pm |
    • RillyKewl

      not helpful.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:17 pm |
    • Relles

      @Shawn, Excuse the correction but not the Western World. Rather Science Vs. Stupidity (religion which exists in the western world, just look at the GOP or whatever. A lot of stupid religious Westerners). the U.S. has defunded NIH, NASA, science education, and scientific discovery; the U.S. has also tried to put creationism (and other mumbojumbo like intelligent design) in science classes. So get it right. its Science Vs. The Idiots who are religious.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:19 pm |
      • Wade

        Fighting fire with fire doesn't really work with bigotry. Reducing the entire religious world to a caricature of its worst features certainly makes it easier to mock and makes it easier for the self-righteous to pat themselves on the back for being superior beings, but your conduct would seem to make you just a different kind of idiot.

        January 26, 2012 at 8:27 pm |
      • wavejump1100

        science and god can co-exist. god created the laws of science. the problem is god did not create religion, humans did.

        January 26, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
      • fimeilleur

        @ wavejumper1100,

        Problem is, where did your version of god come from? Which god are you talking about?
        Science can explain most of the real world without the insertion of a mystical sky being... given time and research, it will probably explain the rest one day.

        January 26, 2012 at 10:29 pm |
      • zudell

        @ relles...your the idiot bro. the fact that your saying god doesnt exist is a meaningful statement. if we're living in a world without god then life is essentially meaningless. if everything is meaningless, there should be no reason for you to talk about religion. it shouldnt even go through your mind. But it does...why? because everything is meaningful. god engineered us to want more. more than what is seen. So is religion stupid? well, if thats what you believe, you shouldnt even make that meaningful statement or you will be contradicting the meaningless philosophy that you live by.

        January 26, 2012 at 10:47 pm |
      • fimeilleur

        Oh Zudell, will I ever get the 45 seconds of my life back that I wasted reading your verbal diarrhea. To answer your questions: we dwell on your religious claims because you try to control my life with them... i.e. a woman's right to an abortion, a terminally ill patient to die with dignity, a follower of Hinduism to learn about evolution rather than the biblical creation myth, etc. etc. etc. Keep your skydaddy where he belongs... inside the tax shelters created for him.

        January 26, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
      • zudell

        filleur.....You seem to have an anger towards the concept of God. I find that odd because a man like you who doesn't believe in god should have no reason to get mad at what im saying. your putting value into your meaningless statement. why dont you just get mad at the girl talking to her boyfriend on the phone??? there both meaningless a matter of fact, why dont i just shoot the one you love most in the head...after all, they are just meaningless, valueless beings living in a hopless universe. You shouldn't get mad right? whats the difference between life and death anyways? its just part of how our body works.

        January 26, 2012 at 11:38 pm |
      • fimeilleur

        no zudell, when you, your ilk and your make believe friend try to impose His make believe will on my real life... that is called impact. And that impact is what I will fight against. Your attempt to confuse the issue is laughable. Either bring something real to the table or I'm done with you.

        January 27, 2012 at 12:45 am |
      • amphiox

        Science and god most decidedly cannot co-exist. One requires faith, and the other demands evidence. In other words, when properly practiced they are mutually exclusive.

        What they can do is stay out of each other's way. Each can claim its own domain, into which the other should not be allowed to interfere. Fortunately the human brain is surprisingly good a compartmentalizing mutually exclusive things.

        January 27, 2012 at 1:04 am |
    • astronomer

      Check your history ... while Europe was busy being all crazy during the Middle Ages – who was advancing science? The Islamic world. Why bother writing a stupid, negative comment.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
      • wavejump1100

        if that is true they sure wasted their head start

        January 26, 2012 at 9:14 pm |
      • fimeilleur

        It is true, and you're right... unfortunate that they let dogma and blind adhearence to a mystical sky daddy, to waste their head start.

        January 26, 2012 at 10:31 pm |
      • JoJo

        The Renaissance Italians did the same thing. World leaders in the scientific method at one point. Then after the Church put Galileo under house arrest, practically chased Leonardo out of the country for his anatomy research, and burned a few dozen other Italian scientists at the stake, the excitement over science in Italy damped down and shifted to France, Germany and England. Maybe America is next.

        January 26, 2012 at 11:46 pm |
      • amphiox

        Wasting head starts is what human civilization does best. At the present moment, the western world is halfway through squandering the lead it built up since the time of the Enlightenment. And whoever ends up taking over the lead will, in their own turn, squander it too.

        And you know what? It doesn't matter on whit. What matters is that the human race, as a whole, manages the advance.

        January 27, 2012 at 1:06 am |
  48. Sonic10158

    I wonder if any of these systems has intelligent life that has spotted us in a similar way. Kind of cool just thinking about it. Not a matter of if, but when we find someone else out there...

    January 26, 2012 at 8:06 pm |
    • Fritz

      I'm goin' with Hawking on this one. I hope we spot THEM before they spot US. I wouldn't want those alien folks out there to find us just to get the wrong idea about us. We don't taste like chicken.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:32 pm |
      • Cam

        Not that I pretend to be anywhere near as smart as Hawkins or Kaku but I agree more with Kaku. I doubt an alien species with the ability to travel light years through space would discover us to eat us and plunder resources. There are 160 billion other planets in the galaxy they could go after without harming anyone. They likely don't have an issue eating if they did they would probably take the amount of technology used in traveling light years through space into food or resource gathering.

        January 26, 2012 at 9:09 pm |
      • Bob836


        January 27, 2012 at 12:31 am |
      • amphiox

        Cam, probably the greatest danger is not that they would be hostile and actively seek our destruction, but that they will find us beneath their notice and basically squish us by accident while engaging in some unrelated project, just as we might bulldoze an anthill without scarcely noticing it while building a highway.

        January 27, 2012 at 1:09 am |
      • amphiox

        Brilliant as he is, Hawking's expertise is in the astrophysics of black holes, not in the sociology of aliens. As such his comments on this matter carry no more weight than the opinion of any other very intelligent amateur commenting on a field that is not his or her area of specialization.

        January 27, 2012 at 1:11 am |
    • Enrique

      Since Kepler is looking outside of the solar system's ecliptic plane, an observer on one of these Kepler planets could not observe Earth in a similar fashion since the Earth would not pass between them and our Sun.

      That doesn't mean they couldn't see Earth with a really good telescope.

      January 26, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
      • amphiox

        They could also detect us by the Doppler method. Though if their instruments are only as sensitive as ours, they won't be able to discover earth. But they would be able to discover Jupiter and Saturn, at the least, and know that there is space in our solar system to fit an earth.

        January 27, 2012 at 1:13 am |
  49. Celtic Hunter-7

    String Theory indicates that there could be eleven (11) dimensional universes bound up in the one we live in (the three dimensions= and time). The others 5-11 could also have the similar bodies (planets, moon, solar systems, galaxies). So the number of exo-planets (including habitable with life/intelligent life) will be like the grains of sand on all the beaches of the Earth or all the stars in the universe.

    January 26, 2012 at 8:03 pm |
    • RillyKewl

      I feel like all these billions of stars, planets, galaxies, etc, are very much like sand on the beach.
      Thats just how it seems to me, absolutely infinite.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:15 pm |
    • Stentor

      String Theory is a bit passe in physics. The current theory is M-Theory or Membrane Theory, still ten dimensions with a temporal dimension. But those other dimensions we can't see because they're rolled up tighter than the length of a proton, a trade-off for the expansion of the three spatial dimensions we currently inhabit. Multiverse Theory is also becoming more acceptable in physics, based on what may exist outside our universe within the bounds of the Membranes.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:23 pm |
    • Chris

      Don't let all those dimensions scare you. The key thing is whether or not sentient life evolves. Who knows? Maybe one day it will evolve here.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
    • Duke

      The first part of your statement is correct – the second hogwash. The added dimensions are postulated to be both infinitesimal, and looped (closed in upon themselves).

      January 26, 2012 at 11:27 pm |
    • Bob836

      The 3+1 is wrong as well, there is no symmetry in the Lorentz transforms (x and t-only), and that will be their undoing (as well as Minkowski.) Also, there is no such thing as absolute time.

      January 27, 2012 at 12:39 am |
    • Sue

      So much nonsense. But I don't have the time or energy now to explain. Suffice it to say, you demonstrate that little knowledge is sometimes worse than none.

      January 27, 2012 at 8:59 am |
  50. Nick

    This shouldnt be news there are millions if not billions of planetary systems.

    January 26, 2012 at 7:58 pm |
    • chad

      Yes, but only these we've identified. Gotta start somewhere.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:12 pm |
    • SB

      Of course there are, Nick. But the reason this is news - and it is - is because these systems have actually been discovered. A logical assumption is one thing, but actually finding them - of course that's news. Especially when several of those planets are wonderfully small (~Earth size). This is also further proof of concept for Kepler, meaning that it certainly has the ability to find such small planets.

      Fantastic news.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:16 pm |
    • Chris

      But... but.... but... they're only 6000 years old.

      January 26, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
    • Duke

      Why ? I find it fascinating.

      January 26, 2012 at 11:27 pm |


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