NASA mission finds its first rocky planet outside our solar system
An artist's concept of Kepler-10b, an exoplanet with a mass 4.6 times that of Earth.
January 10th, 2011
03:17 PM ET

NASA mission finds its first rocky planet outside our solar system

There goes the celestial neighborhood.

Scientists at the Kepler mission have discovered their first rocky planet outside our solar system, NASA announced Monday.

The exoplanet, called Kepler-10b, is 1.4 times the size of Earth and is the smallest found outside the reach of the sun's gravitational pull, NASA said Monday on its website.

The discovery came after 10 months of data-collecting by NASA's Kepler mission, tasked with finding Earth-like planets.

“The discovery of Kepler 10-b is a significant milestone in the search for planets similar to our own,” Douglas Hudgins, a Kepler scientist based in Washington, said in a news release. “Although this planet is not in the habitable zone, the exciting find showcases the kinds of discoveries made possible by the mission and the promise of many more to come,” he said.

A habitable zone is a region where liquid water can exist on a planet's surface, according to NASA's website.

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Filed under: Science • Space
soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. Philip

    If NASA were to find extraterrestrial life and the leader of the Aliens asked you who was in charge of the earth, what would your answer be?

    January 11, 2011 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
  2. Cesar

    My answer would be: Philip.

    January 11, 2011 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
  3. Eric Torrez

    Well according to a group and a civil enginer out of california this world is going to end on may 21 2011 so they better hurry and find a habital planet fast. go to FAMILY RADIO.COM for more info on end of the world

    January 11, 2011 at 9:50 am | Report abuse |
  4. Philip

    One of these days I'm gonna get a straightforward answer outta you Cesar, and will not stop till I do! :)

    January 11, 2011 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
  5. COL. BAT GUANO

    All societies, lives and industries of the earth should be focused on space exploration. We are already on a space ship.

    January 11, 2011 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
  6. Nefton

    Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an Earth shattering Kaboom?
    The P-14 modulator is missing

    January 11, 2011 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  7. Philip

    Spaceship Earth has damage that must be repaired before we resume exploration. (duh)

    January 11, 2011 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  8. natashia rousseau

    im on facebook look me up@jordygordy.

    January 11, 2011 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
  9. natashia rousseau

    @lol- if there is no god then you dont exist. hows that workin for ya? lol sorry couldnt resist a little poke at ur name. god has been around for such a time that we can not fathom. just because he hasnt told us all he has created doesnt mean that there is nothing else out there. and even that is not of great importance. he has given us all we need for now. and it is up to us to dig for it like the treasure it is.

    January 11, 2011 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
  10. natashia rousseau

    p.s. the middle name is marie and pay attention as to how u spell my first name when searching.

    January 11, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  11. SRaye

    Did anyone notice that the the figure designated in the caption of the artist's conception doesn't match the figure stated in the third "paragraph" of this piece? Wow, CNN! Way. To. Go. Really. One would think that editing has not met it's demise at the hands of "virtual" news. If you need some help, just email me. I will be happy to help. For a fee.

    February 2, 2011 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
  12. SRaye

    Having said that, I used the wrong form: I should have written "its," not "it's." D'oh! Hahahahahahaahahahaha! Silly me! Nevermind, I retract my offer to edit, CNN! LOL

    February 2, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
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