We didn’t know what the Sun looked like in its first billion years, and it’s super important because it likely changed how Venus’ atmosphere evolved and how quickly it lost water, said Prabal Saxena, an astrophysicist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. “It also probably changed how quickly Mars lost its atmosphere, and it changed the atmospheric chemistry of Earth.”
Despite being the very first planet candidate discovered by NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope, the object now known as Kepler-1658 b had a rocky road to confirmation. “Our new analysis, which uses stellar sound waves observed in the Kepler data to characterize the host star, demonstrated that the star is in fact three times larger than previously thought. This in turn means that the planet is three times larger, revealing that Kepler-1658 b is actually a hot Jupiter-like planet,” said Ashley Chontos at the University of Hawaiʻi. With this refined analysis, everything pointed to the object truly being a planet, but confirmation from new observations was still needed.