According to findings released by the 219th American Astronomical Society (AAS) meeting, every star we see in the night sky has, on average, 1.6 planets orbiting it. This implies that in our galaxy alone there may 10 billion Earth-sized planets.
Gravitational microlensing is a method that uses the gravity of a far-flung star to amplify the light from even more distant stars that have planets.
Astronomers used a number of relatively small telescopes that make up the Microlensing Network for the Detection of Small Terrestrial Exoplanets, or Mindstep, to look for the rare event of one star passing directly in front of another as seen from Earth.
"Just the recent 15 years have seen the count of known planets beyond the Solar System rising from none to about 700, but we can expect hundreds of billions to exist in the Milky Way alone," said co-author Dr Martin Dominik, from the University of St Andrews, UK.
|How Planets Can be Terraformed|
|Live HD Stream from the International Space Station of Planet Earth|
|NASA is planning for a robotic spaceship to lasso a small asteroid and park it near the moon.|
|"To continue advancing as a space-faring species, we need to embrace this commercial space mining industry."|
|TED-Ed Explains How Cosmic Rays Help Us Understand the Universe|
|Folding Laundry Without Arms or Legs|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|“A short cut through spacetime allowing for travel over cosmic scale distances in a short period.”|
|“If you fell asleep in 1945 and woke up in 2018 you would not recognize the world around you.”|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|“Reliably bottling up miniature stars, inside complex machines on Earth, demands otherworldly amounts of patience.”|
|Fake Name Generator|
|Recycled Vacuum Lamps|
|Facebook, Twitter Users Could Face Insurance Hikes|
|Creepstream: Looking at Insecure Camera Feeds From Around the World|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|Time Lapse of Planet Earth as Seen from the Space Station|