Exoplanet Detective Quiz

Complete the quiz to test your knowledge on exoplanets and get your certificate!

Exoplanet Detective Quiz
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1. What is an exoplanet?
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Correct! An exoplanet is a planet beyond our solar system.The vast majority of exoplanets are found orbiting other stars, but there are a few that do not, which are called free-floating planets.

Exoplanets come in many different sizes, with a very wide range of temperatures, compositions, configurations and orbital periods. So far we have not found one that is exactly the same as the Earth, but we are looking…

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Not quite! An exoplanet is a planet beyond our solar system.The vast majority of exoplanets are found orbiting other stars, but there are a few that do not, which are called free-floating planets.

Exoplanets come in many different sizes, with a very wide range of temperatures, compositions, configurations and orbital periods. So far we have not found one that is exactly the same as the Earth, but we are looking…

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2. How many exoplanets have been discovered to-date?
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Correct! As of November 2022, more than 5000 exoplanets have been discovered using a variety of different techniques, telescopes and surveys. There are many more "candidate" exoplanets which have yet to be confirmed.

For more information take a look at exoplanet.eu.

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Not quite! As of November 2022, more than 5000 exoplanets have been discovered using a variety of different techniques, telescopes and surveys. There are many more "candidate" exoplanets which have yet to be confirmed.

For more information take a look at exoplanet.eu.

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3. Why can't we visit an exoplanet?
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Correct! Exoplanets are found well beyond our Solar System. It takes light from even the closest exoplanet several years to reach the Earth.

Current spacecraft can travel at only a very small fraction of the speed of light, so travelling to the nearest exoplanet would take thousands of years with current technology.

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Not quite! Exoplanets are found well beyond our Solar System. It takes light from even the closest exoplanet several years to reach the Earth.

Current spacecraft can travel at only a very small fraction of the speed of light, so travelling to the nearest exoplanet would take thousands of years with current technology.

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4. What is the name of the first ESA space telescope dedicated to studying exoplanets?
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Correct! The satellite is called Cheops. Cheops stands for CHaracterising ExOPlanet Satellite.

Cheops studies known exoplanets orbiting bright stars, measuring very precisely their sizes.

To find out more about Cheops, take a look at: esa.int/Science_Exploration/Space_Science/Cheops and https://cheops.unibe.ch/.

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Not quite! The satellite is called Cheops. Cheops stands for CHaracterising ExOPlanet Satellite.

Cheops studies known exoplanets orbiting bright stars, measuring very precisely their sizes.

To find out more about Cheops, take a look at: esa.int/Science_Exploration/Space_Science/Cheops and https://cheops.unibe.ch/.

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5. What is an exoplanet transit? When an exoplanet…
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Correct! An exoplanet transit occurs when an exoplanet passes between the star it is orbiting and the telescope observing it, blocking a small portion of the starlight that the telescope would collect.

By monitoring the dip in the light from the star as the planet transits, we can study the planet itself. This technique is known as transit photometry, and is used by Cheops.

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Not quite! An exoplanet transit occurs when an exoplanet passes between the star it is orbiting and the telescope observing it, blocking a small portion of the starlight that the telescope would collect.

By monitoring the dip in the light from the star as the planet transits, we can study the planet itself. This technique is known as transit photometry, and is used by Cheops.

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6. Where is Cheops?
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Correct! Cheops orbits the Earth approximately once every 100 minutes, at an altitude of 700 km above the Earth’s surface. This orbit is called sun-synchronous, with the satellite crossing the equator at the same local solar time every day and night.

Cheops passes over the equator at around 6am/6pm, riding the so-called day/night terminator – as a result the orbit is also known as a dawn/dusk orbit. The orbit was chosen to minimise the impact of sunlight and reflected stray light from Earth on Cheops observations.

For a visualisation of the CHEOPS orbit take a look at: esa.int/ESA_Multimedia/Videos/2018/11/The_orbit_of_Cheops.

To see where Cheops is right now take a look at: cheops.unibe.ch/.

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Almost correct! Cheops orbits the Earth approximately once every 100 minutes, at an altitude of 700 km above the Earth’s surface.This orbit is called sun-synchronous, with the satellite crossing the equator at the same local solar time every day and night.

Cheops passes over the equator at around 6am/6pm, riding the so-called day/night terminator – as a result the orbit is also known as a dawn/dusk orbit. The orbit was chosen to minimise the impact of sunlight and reflected stray light from Earth on Cheops observations.

For a visualisation of the CHEOPS orbit take a look at: esa.int/ESA_Multimedia/Videos/2018/11/The_orbit_of_Cheops.

To see where Cheops is right now take a look at: cheops.unibe.ch/.

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Rules: The quiz is composed of 6 questions about exoplanets. Complete it successfully and you will receive an Exoplanet Detective certificate.

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