Extrasolar Planets: What can be known before going there

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J. L. Coughlin (2013), JBIS, 66, 47-50

Refcode: 2013.66.47
Keywords: Astronomy, Exoplanet, Extrasolar Planet, Observing Techniques, Astrobiology IntroductIon

The number of known extrasolar planets has dramatically increased in recent years, with trends towards finding smaller, lower-mass, more Earth-like planets. There are multiple techniques used to discover extrasolar planets, among which many show promise of finding the first truly Earth-like analogue. As well, multiple techniques have been developed that allow the determination of an extrasolar planet's atmospheric composition, temperature, global weather patterns, and other properties. It is very likely that several Earth-like extrasolar planets will be discovered before the end of this decade, and that over the following few decades, it will be discovered if they are habitable, and possibly contain life.

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