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Europe’s Space Agency Launch Satellite to Study Planets Outside Our Solar System

By Benjamin Minick

Contributing Writer for Telegraph Local|@TimberwolfP

Humankind is about to get a new look at what lies outside of our solar system. Indian space agency or Esa lunch the satellite early this morning aboard a Russian Soyuz rocket that took off from Guyana Space Center in French Guiana Atop the Soyuz rocket ship was the Characterizing Exoplanet Satellite or CHEOPS for short it will deploy from the rocket to orbit around Earth, where it will have a better view of nearby stars that scientists have previously have planets that have their own respective orbits. This is the continuation of a project that was started many years ago by the Americans with the Hubble Space Telescope.

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The objective of CHEOPS is to start exoplanets, which means they are planets outside of our solar system as they pass in front of their Stars. By using their stars, they block out the ambient light and become visible. The satellite will specifically be looking at large planets in particular with sizes ranging from, larger than Earth to those closer to our medium gas giants like Neptune. It is speculated that this is the technology that will begin the targeted search for planets that can sustain life. While we know that there are planets out there, we know very little about anything outside of our solar system. Realistically we know very little about the planetary system here. What we do know is that there is no planet in our current solar system that is capable of supporting life other than Earth.

The primary determining factor that the satellite will be using to select planets for observation is going to be there density. Scientists would like to discover what their density is and whether they’re rocky like Earth-or gaseous like Saturn Jupiter and Uranus. That is going to be the first factor in determining the habitability of such planets in future endeavors. After launching this morning the satellite made contact with the Antarctic station so it appears as though everything is according to plan as far as delivery into orbit goes. This was a busy morning for space as the rocket also contained additional science and research equipment belonging to the ESA  and the French National Space Agency. Several other countries had stuff onboard  Nothing like hitching a ride into orbit.

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Scientists were fortunate to get to the equipment into orbit as the launch had to be canceled yesterday during count down because of an internal glitch with the delivery vehicle that was fixed. Which is a good thing because this technology is going to be busy as of now there are 4143 planets that have been discovered rotating around Stars other than our sun. If they are going to find one that is habitable. This is a great first step.

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