The Kepler telescope uncovered 5 new planets earths size in the Milky way galaxy system. NASA was investigating answers to some questions when they made the discovery.
"We went from zero to 68 Earth-sized planet candidates and zero to 54 candidates in the habitable zone -- a region where liquid water could exist on a planet's surface. Some candidates could even have moons with liquid water," said William Borucki of NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif., and the Kepler Mission's science principal investigator. "Five of the planetary candidates are both near Earth-size and orbit in the habitable zone of their parent stars."
In the undending search for life on other plants and in the attempt to answer such questins as are we alone out here in space Kepler has uncovered over twelve hundred canditate planets.
That's more than all the people have found so far in history," said Borucki. "Now, these are candidates, but most of them, I'm convinced, will be confirmed as planets in the coming months and years."
The Kepler Mission uses a NASA space observatory designed to discover Earth-like planets orbiting other stars. The spacecraft was launched on March 7, 2009. The mission is named in honor of German astronomer. Over the next 3.5 years Kepler will use a photometer developed by NASA to monitor the brightness of over 145,000 main sequence stars in a fixed field of view. The data collected will be used to analyze periodic fluctuations that indicate the presence of planets outside our solar system that are in the process of crossing the the faces of other stars.