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Science and the Environment

MSU Professor Explores The Heavens to Find the Next Earth

NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle

  For the last decade or so, it has become apparent that planets are not specific to our solar system, but instead are as common as the stars. 

Dr. Peter Plavchan, an astronomer from Missouri State University, talks about his own research into the burgeoning field of exoplanets.  During the past five years, Dr. Plavchan has been working to locate and characterize these planets, and in so doing answer the bigger question of the likelihood of another earth. 

As Dr. Plavchan puts it, “Over the last twenty-five years, we’ve been turning the fiction of that question into fact.”  In this spot, he discusses recent developments and describes the methods for finding and understanding distant planets.