An artist's concept depicts one possible appearance of the planet Kepler-452b, the first near-Earth-size world to be found in the habitable zone of a star that is similar to our sun. NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle hide caption

toggle caption NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle

Artist's concept compares Earth (left) to the new planet, called Kepler-452b, which is about 60 percent larger in diameter. NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle hide caption

toggle caption NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle

Kepler Telescope Introduces Earth To A Very Distant Cousin

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/425631594/425722715" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

A portrait of Pluto (right) and its moon Charon in a colorized, composite image made July 11 during the final approach of the New Horizons spacecraft. Astronomers are eager to get a much closer view of the icy world Tuesday. NASA-JHUAPL-SWRI hide caption

toggle caption NASA-JHUAPL-SWRI

Planet Or Not, Icy Pluto To Finally Get Its Day In The Sun

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/421840110/422673007" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

An artist's rendition of the HD 7924 planetary system — just 54 light-years away from Earth — shows newly discovered exoplanets c and d, which join Planet b. Karen Termaura, BJ Fulton/UH IfA hide caption

toggle caption Karen Termaura, BJ Fulton/UH IfA

Welcome To The Neighborhood: 2 Super-Earths Discovered

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/403066358/403253070" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Saturn has a rocky surface, but it's deep beneath the clouds. That makes it hard to tell exactly how long the day is. NASA hide caption

toggle caption NASA

A Day's A Day The World Around — But Shorter On Saturn

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/395378994/395966202" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Planet: bottom of a glass containing half and half, water, food coloring. Moons: bottom of a glass containing coconut milk, water, food coloring. Stars: salt, cinnamon, baking powder, Tums. Navid Baraty hide caption

toggle caption Navid Baraty

Stars over the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. Sheppard and Trujillo used the new Dark Energy Camera (DECam) on a telescope there to find the distant dwarf planet 2012 VP 113. Reidar Hahn/Fermilab hide caption

toggle caption Reidar Hahn/Fermilab

Hunting For Big Planets Far Beyond Pluto May Soon Be Easier

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/382276026/383346121" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

This diagram for the outer solar system shows the orbits of Sedna (in orange) and 2012 VP113 (in red). The sun and terrestrial planets are at the center, surrounded by the orbits (in purple) of the four giant planets — Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. The Kuiper belt, which includes Pluto, is shown by the dotted light blue region. Scott S. Sheppard/Carnegie Institution for Science hide caption

toggle caption Scott S. Sheppard/Carnegie Institution for Science

New Dwarf Planet Found At The Solar System's Outer Limits

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/294358647/294899861" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Kepler-22b, seen in this artist's rendering, is a planet a bit larger than Earth that orbits in the habitable zone of its star. Some researchers think there might be "superhabitable" worlds that may not resemble Earth. NASA/Ames/JPL-Caltech hide caption

toggle caption NASA/Ames/JPL-Caltech

In Search For Habitable Planets, Why Stop At 'Earth-Like'?

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/263106030/263123779" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

This illustration shows the relative sizes of the habitable-zone planets Kepler-22b, Kepler-69c, Kepler-62e, Kepler-62f and the Earth. NASA/Ames/JPL-Caltech hide caption

toggle caption NASA/Ames/JPL-Caltech

An illustration shows how the planet Kepler-36c might look from the surface of the neighboring Kepler-36b. David Aguilar/Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics/NASA hide caption

toggle caption David Aguilar/Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics/NASA

Circa 1612, German astronomer Johannes Kepler (1571 - 1630) Hulton Archive/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Hulton Archive/Getty Images