NASA confirms that there are more than 5,000 exoplanets

NASA has confirmed the existence of 5,000 planets beyond our solar system. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has updated NASA’s exoplanet archive with 65 new members with varying characteristics.

Small and rocky worlds, super-Earths, mini Neptunes or gas giants that exceed Jupiter in size are part of the discovery. Also worlds like Tatooine, which orbit two stars at the same time, or those which orbit white dwarfs.

Passing the 5,000 exoplanet mark is an important milestone for JPL, but it’s not just a number. “Each is a new world, a new planet. I’m excited about each one because we don’t know anything about them,” said Jessie Christiansen, a researcher at the Exoplanet Science Institute.

The also director of the Archives indicates that 4,900 are located a few thousand light-years away. Christiansen warns that we could find between 100 and 200 billion planets if we consider that our solar system is 30,000 light years from the center of the galaxy.

Gas giants, Super Earths and planets like Tatooine and more

“Star Wars: A New Hope”

Of the 5,000 exoplanets that make up the NASA archives, 35% are similar in size to Neptune and Uranus. Some are Frost Giants, although there are hotter variants that are rarer. Gas giants like Jupiter or Saturn account for 30% of the total. These planets may be hotter than some stars, such as KELT-9b, which has a surface temperature of 3,780 degrees Celsius.