Scientists have been developing techniques for discovering worlds beyond the solar system and have been detecting hundreds of them every year. As of now, there are 5,438(opens in a new tab) confirmed exoplanets, with another 9,600 arrangements under scrutiny. The majority of these planets are in the Milky Way, but scientists think they have found the first planet within another galaxy two years ago.
The universe is believed to have an unfathomable number of worlds, including many trillions of stars in the hundreds of billions of galaxies. Each planet discovered is distinct, with unique features like water worlds, planets with multiple sunsets, volcanic planets spewing lava, and planets in unexpected shapes such as a football.
The new and upcoming James Webb Space Telescope will make it a lot easier to know more about these planets, and it will dedicate 25% of its time studying exoplanets. Knowing what chemicals are present in a planet’s atmosphere can tell scientists a lot about whether it could be suitable for life.
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This TRAPPIST Planet Couldn’t Survive
A study this year of TRAPPIST-1B concluded that the rocky exoplanet about 41 light-years away is not going to survive.
Credit: NASA / ESA / CSA / Joseph Olmsted (STScI) illustration
The new planet discoveries around the TRAPPIST-1 solar system has caused great excitement among scientists, as it has seven earth-sized planets orbiting a violent yet tiny star that is commonly found in the Milky Way. Though scientists believe one or two of these planets could be habitable, studying TRAPPIST-1B using the Webb telescope has revealed that it is not likely to support life. Researchers are preparing to study other planets in this intriguing star system, especially its neighbor TRAPPIST-1E, which is the fourth from the star, and is believed to be able to form water.