lanets too close to the star they orbit, like Mercury, are too hot for liquid water. Even Venus turns out to be too hot, thanks to a runaway greenhouse effect caused by its carbon dioxide-rich atmosphere. Planets farther from their star, like Jupiter, are too cold, at least on its surface — although Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons, may have oceans of liquid water beneath an icy crust.
Say hello to the three new exoplanets: Kepler 62e and Kepler 62f orbit are the fifth and sixth planets orbiting the star Kepler 62, and Kepler 69c is the third planet orbiting — you guessed it — Kepler 69. All three are nearly the same size as our Earth.
Kepler 62f has a diameter 40% larger than the Earth’s. It orbits its star once every 267 days, very similar to the 225-day period of Venus. We do not know what Kepler 62f is made of but other exoplanets of a similar size are known to be rocky, so that’s the best guess for now.
Kepler 62e is about 60% larger than the Earth and is probably hotter because it lies at the inner edge of the habitable zone, in a 122-day orbit — slightly longer than Mercury’s 88-day orbit.