Thursday, January 05, 2012
Today I learned about HATNet for the first time, a group of small Hungarian-funded telescopes that work in tandem to do such things as discover exoplanets as today's announcement of four new ones explains. The capability of such small telescopes to accomplish such a job is just as exciting as the discovery itself, since if a mid-sized European country like Hungary (actually just a small group of Hungarian astronomers, even better) can do this then many others can.
This will become more and more important this year as we discover Earth-like planets in the habitable zones of stars like our own that are hopefully not too far from us.
I'm a bit late to learning about HATNet since it appears it has already discovered a full 29 planets.