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Published:September 1st, 2012 13:58 EST
NASA`s Kepler Mission Keeps Rolling and Discovering New and Wonderful Things that Baffle Scientists

NASA`s Kepler Mission Keeps Rolling and Discovering New and Wonderful Things that Baffle Scientists

By Ron G Anselm


From watching third down conversions today to articles on NASA (got a little carried away today. College football starts and I am watching Notre Dame and Navy) we can see that extraterrestrial life does exist outside of our solar system. NASA continues to make progress in far off space exploration to distant galaxies that even Star Trek would not dare to call their own stomping ground.

NASA`S Kepler Mission which has been a mission that goes where no man has gone before has proven a lot of science candy or should I say has discovered a lot of things out there in that big area we call space that scientist are learning more and more about other planets and star that inhibit those planets.

The Kepler Mission has discovered multiple transiting planets orbiting two suns for the first time. The system, known as a circumbinary planetary system, is 4,900 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus. (

This new discovery has given scientist valuable information to the effect that more than one planet can form and persist within a binary star. It also proves the extreme diversity of many different and various planets within our galaxy. So, for you that think Earth and the rest of the planets or the only life out there, nope; think again, there are many other planets out there than just our own planets within our solar system and those many other planets have yet to be discovered.

Scientists and Astronomers detect two planets in the Keplar-47 system that seems to have two stars that eclipse those two planets every seven and a half days. At least that is the data being picked up from the mission here on Earth by NASA. One of the interesting facts about the two starts that eclipse the two planets is that one of the stars is almost the size of our sun but only shines about eighty-four percent as bright as the sun and the other star is diminutive or smaller and measures one-third the size of the sun and is only about one-percent as bright. So, you kind of have a papa star (the papa star being the very large star) and a baby star (being the much smaller star) frequenting the two planets.

Jerome Orosz, who is the associate professor of astronomy at San Diego State University and lead author of the paper stated, In contrast to a single planet orbiting a single star, the planet in a circumbinary system must transit a `moving target. As a consequence, time intervals between the transits and their durations can vary substantially, sometimes short, other times long. The intervals were the telltale sign these planets are in circumbinary orbits." (Orosz, J.)

The inner planet which is known as Kepler 47-b completes its orbit around the two stars in less than fifty days. While being a planet that takes short trips around the two stars it is also thought to be a swelting world with high amounts of Methane in its atmosphere that is made up of high amounts of thick haze and as hot as frying an egg on the sidewalk in Arizona in mid-July. Our planet Earth is a dwarf planet compared to the size of this planet which measures three times the size of our planet.

The other planet or outer planet which is known as Kepler 47-c, orbits the two stars at a much slower rate than Kepler 47-b does at a rate of three-hundred and three days to complete the orbit. This slow orbit places it in the so-called "habitable zone," the region in a planetary system where liquid water might exist on the surface of a planet. While not a world hospitable for life, Kepler-47c is thought to be a gaseous giant slightly larger than Neptune, where an atmosphere of thick bright water-vapor clouds might exist. (

William Borucki, who is Kepler`s mission principal investigator at NASA`s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California said, Unlike our sun, many stars are part of multiple-star systems where two or more stars orbit one another. The question always has been do they have planets and planetary systems? This Kepler discovery proves that they do. "In our search for habitable planets, we have found more opportunities for life to exist." (Borucki, W.)

Greg Laughlin who is the professor of Astrophysics and Planetary Science at the University of California in Santa Cruz said, "The presence of a full-fledged circumbinary planetary system orbiting Kepler-47 is an amazing discovery. These planets are very difficult to form using the currently accepted paradigm, and I believe that theorists, myself included, will be going back to the drawing board to try to improve our understanding of how planets are assembled in dusty circumbinary disks." (Laughlin, G.)

NASA`s Kepler`s mission has discovered new information that not only gives scientists valuable hope for other life outside of our solar system but the mission has gone into many different entities of space to discover things that NASA has never dreamed of existed. More to come ...


Speaking of College game day today and the start of college football season we have to also look at the other great entity that has given the sports fan more joy and fun that riding the height of a wave on a surfboard at Malibu Beach and that is the great game of baseball.

To experience this fun you have to read about the game itself and get an understanding of the history of Major League baseball. It will be some of the most fun you have had reading, learning, and discovering things you never imagined about baseball but the only way to do this is to read my upcoming book which should hopefully be in the market and ready for purchase in December of this year or maybe January of next year. Not sure yet so I will let you know when I know.

If you happen to live in Alabama you can come to one of my many upcoming book signings I will be doing in and around Birmingham and abroad. I will be posting each and every book signing on Facebook and should also be in the local media as to the time and place of each of my book signings. Come out to one of my signings, grab a cup of coffee and we can chat about the great game of baseball. I will also sign and autograph your copy of my book. If you don`t live in Alabama send me your copy of my book once you purchase it and I will autograph it for free and send it back to you.