SpaceX launch delayed, rescheduled for Wednesday

SpaceX launch delayed, rescheduled for Wednesday

Just a couple of decades ago, the notion of finding habitable planets - or any planets at all - was a mere fantasy, said Paul Hertz, astrophysics division director at NASA.

The next step is for ground-based and space telescopes to peer even closer.The Hubble Space Telescope and the James Webb Space Telescope, scheduled to launch in 2020, should be able to reveal more about planets' mass, density and the makeup of their atmosphere - all clues to habitability.

The satellite known as Tess will survey nearly the entire sky, staring at the brightest, closest stars in an effort to find any planets that might be encircling them.

According to a report by Space.com, NASA's current exoplanet hunting observatory named Kepler, has nearly exhausted its fuel supply, requiring NASA to put TESS into orbit to continue research. Bigger and more powerful observatories of the future will scrutinize these prime candidates for potential signs of life. We've already seen the first-stage return to Earth and land, but now Elon Musk wants to get the second stage back, too. NASA's newest planet-hunting spacecraft is poised for a Monday evening launch.

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Recovering the second stage of a rocket in addition to the first would allow SpaceX to reduce expenses and possibly reduce the price of launches. The Tess satellite will survey nearly the entire sky, staring at the brightest, closest stars in an effort to find any planets that might be encircling them.

NASA calls the spacecraft TESS, which is short for Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite.

The satellite will look for transits or occasional light-blocking events that result due to the presence of a planet orbiting a star, according to a statement from NASA.

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