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Top exoplanet finds of 2013

11:38am, December 28, 2013

LITTLE RUNT  Kepler-37b is the littlest planet found to date and looks puny compared to planets in our solar system and to those also orbiting parent star Kepler-37.

With the addition this year of 180 new worlds to the Paris Observatory’s list of confirmed exoplanets, there are now more than 1,000 known planets orbiting stars other than the sun.

Here are some of the year’s most notable finds:

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1. The Earthiest

Kepler-78b is most similar to Earth in mass, diameter and composition; it could be made of rock with an iron core. But it’s no Earth analog, whizzing around its star in 8.5 hours, with temperatures exceeding 2,000° Celsius (SN Online: 10/30/13).

2. The wettest

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