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Space observatory designed to find another Earth launching by 2024

20
Feb
2014

The European Space Agency will launch an observatory into space designed to seek out potentially habitable planets outside of our solar system. The PLATO — Planetary Transits and Oscillations of stars — mission will search for planets by monitoring the brightness of up to a million nearby stars. The mission will search for habitable planets The space-based observatory will use 34 separate small telescopes and cameras to watch for tiny, regular drops in their targets brightness: a sign that a planet is passing in front of the star. The ESA says the mission will have an emphasis on discovering and characterizing Earth-sized planets and super-Earths inside their parent stars habitable zone, which could potentially support the existence of both water and life.

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