Stellar oddballs

Kepler spacecraft finds much more than exoplanets

By Charles Petit, 10:24 AM May 19, 2011

After mind-bendingly precise data and artists’ renditions of mysterious stars played across the screen, Martin Still leaned into his lectern at an American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting early this year to deliver a plea to fellow astronomers. In one word: Help!

“We need you guys,” said the manager of NASA’s guest observer program for Kepler, among the most successful space telescopes ever launched. “Wait a year and it’s too late.”

Kepler has found a bonus, a treasury of ...

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