TESS Data Expected in 2018

The Q1 2018 update will be the last data update before NASA’s TESS revolutionizes our knowledge of nearby solar systems. TESS is scheduled to launch in March 2018, but rather than examining far-distant stars as Kepler has done, TESS will examine nearby stars for transiting exoplanets, potentially discovering many thousands of planetary systems among near-Earth stars. With a target catalog of hundreds of thousands of stars, TESS will examine not just the nearest few thousand stars included in the Near Star Map, but stars well beyond this tool’s limited range. As Kepler has demonstrated, where we look for planets, we find them.

near star map logo

As data from TESS becomes available in the public domain, the Near Star Map will be updated to include the new discoveries. We expect the number of nearby solar systems to rapidly leap from the approximately 60 presently included in the map to several hundred, and perhaps many more, among our sun’s nearest neighbors.

The neighborhood is about to get crowded.

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