Sunday Science: Alone in the galaxy?

I have been spending alot of time on Google+ and it’s become my favorite social media site.  So many different communities out there to meet new people and learn new things.

One post that caught my eye came from Astrophysicist Brian Koberlein, where he talked about studying data from the Kepler Mission (Kepler is an orbital observatory NASA uses to search for Earth like planets in our galaxy).
Based on early analysis of data taken from the Kepler Mission, it seems there are a ton of Earth sized planets, sitting in the habitable zone of stars the same size as our Sun.  But the one thing that strikes me as most amazing is that Kepler has only scanned a tiny fraction of our galaxy.

Check out this image from artist Jon Lomberg that shows just how little of our galaxy that Kepler has been able to scan.  There could be billions of habitable Earth sized worlds in our galaxy alone. Now consider the fact that there are about 100 billion galaxies in the observable Universe, and let that simmer in your brain for a while.

copyright Jon Lomberg jonlomberg.com
copyright Jon Lomberg jonlomberg.com

 

So go click on the link to Brian’s post, and let a Universe of possibilities open up in your mind. It’s scientists like Brian that help us understand where we are today, so that we can find a way to a better tomorrow!

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