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Citizen astronomers discover new worlds like our own

Citizen astronomers have discovered a seven planet solar system in the 'Kepler field' in a part of space known as KOI-351.

According to a scientific paper, published by Cornell University Library, the system "bears some resemblance to our own solar system, with the inner five planets ranging from Earth to mini-Neptune radii and the outer planets being gas giants".

Citizen astronomers have discovered a seven planet solar i Credit: NASA/Ames/JPL-Caltech/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The Planet Hunters citizen science programme reported the "discovery of 14 new transiting planet candidates in the Kepler field", which were missed by the so-called "Kepler Transit Planet Search (TPS) algorithm".

The programme was set up to allow volunteers to trawl through vast amounts of public data from Nasa's Kepler space telescope.

Astronomers discover 'most distant galaxy'

An artist's rendition of the newly-discovered most distant galaxy, code-named z8-GND-5296 Credit: University of California/PA Wire

Astronomers say they have detected the most distant galaxy to date after spotting it through NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.

The galaxy, which has the code name z8-GND-5296, is made up of stars whose light began travelling to Earth 700 million years after the so-called 'Big Bang'.

Studies have revealed the galaxy is rich in metal, generating a huge number of new stars.

Scientists say the discovery will enable them to study the earliest formation of galaxies and explore how they've evolved throughout the age of the universe.

Sir Patrick Moore 'staggered' by 55 years of The Sky At Night

Astronomer Sir Patrick Moore said tonight he was "staggered" to be celebrating the 55th anniversary of The Sky At Night.

Sir Patrick Moore hosts a reception at the BBC Broadcasting house to mark the Sky at night 55th anniversary episode. Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

The 89-year-old said he hoped the stargazing series would continue "indefinitely", but that he wished the BBC would schedule it in an earlier time slot.

At a party hosted by BBC director general Mark Thompson, Sir Patrick said: "I'm absolutely staggered. I never thought when I began doing television shows that I'd be on for another year, let alone 55 years.

"I didn't know if I was going to be good enough or if the subject matter would hold up."