The Kepler Space Telescope has released its final farewell!
Though it finished its mission back in October 2018, this amazing NASA instrument – which studied stars in our galaxy, discovered thousands of exoplanets, and helped us on our search for planets that could support life – has just shared one last image.
This image from Kepler shows a region of the sky near the constellation Aquarius. The TRAPPIST-1 planetary system can be found in this area of the sky, hosting seven exoplanets (three of which are potentially habitable worlds).
A final image like this one from a telescope is often referred to as a “last light.”
Over the course of its mission, the Kepler Space Telescope confirmed more than 2,500 exoplanets and another 3,000 potentials. The search for exoplanets is far from over though, as the torch has been passed to TESS (Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite).
We'll be sharing Kepler's final image all weekend in our Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium, the biggest planetarium in the Western Hemisphere. See it projected on our massive screen! Click here to see all the shows currently playing in our planetarium.