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Jakarta Post

RI space agency to kick off search for exoplanets next year

  • Tri Indah Oktavianti


Jakarta   /   Fri, October 30 2020   /  01:00 am
A handout artist's impression released on September 11, 2019, by ESA/Hubble shows the K2-18b super-Earth, the only super-Earth exoplanet known to host both water and temperatures that could support life. (M. KORNMESSER/ESA/Hubble/AFP/File)

Indonesia will soon join a group of global nations actively involved in search of planets that orbit a star or stars outside the solar system. Indonesia’s National Institute of Aeronautics and Space (Lapan) has pledged to begin searching for exoplanets and life beyond the solar system in 2021. “The media uses the term ‘search for extraterrestrial life’, but the technical term is habitable exoplanets,” Lapan head Thomas Djamaluddin told The Jakarta Post on Wednesday. The project to search for exoplanets – planets orbiting distant stars – will begin for the first time in Indonesia following the construction of the National Observatory on Mount Timau in Kupang regency, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT). Touted to be Southeast Asia's largest observatory, the facility started construction in 2017 under the partnership of Lapan, the Bandung Inst...