According to NASA, there are already over 5,000 verified planets beyond our solar system.
The recent addition of 65 exoplanets to NASA's Exoplanet Archive contributed to Monday's scientific achievement. Exoplanet findings from peer-reviewed scientific articles that have been confirmed utilizing several methods of planet detection can be found in this database.
"It's not just a number," said Jessie Christiansen, the archive's science head and a research scientist at the California Institute of Technology's Exoplanet Science Institute in Pasadena. "Each of them is a new world, a completely different planet. Every one excites me because we don't know anything about them."
Exoplanet discovery will be aided by the addition of new telescopes. The James Webb Space Telescope, which was launched in December, will be able to peek into extraterrestrial atmospheres.
The TRAPPIST system will be studied in depth by the Webb telescope.
The Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope will launch in 2027 and use a number of approaches to aid in the hunt for exoplanets. Exoplanet atmospheres will be studied by the European Space Agency's ARIEL mission, which will launch in 2029.
Although more than 5,000 exoplanets have been confirmed by scientists, there are potentially hundreds of billions more scattered around the Milky Way galaxy.
Christiansen estimates that 4,900 of the 5,000 known exoplanets are within a few thousand light-years of Earth. "And consider that we're 30,000 light-years from the galaxy's center; extrapolating from the little bubble around us, that means there are many more planets in our galaxy that we haven't discovered yet, possibly as many as 100 to 200 billion." It's incredible."