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Distant planets

A newly discovered planet, designated by the unglamorous identifier of OGLE-2005-BLG-390Lb, orbits a red star five times less massive than the Sun and located at a distance of about 20,000 light years, in this undated artist's impression. A new planet-hunting technique has detected the most Earth-like planet yet around a star other than our sun, raising hopes of finding a space rock that might support life, astronomers reported on January 25, 2006. REUTERS/ESO/Handout

Dazzling distant galaxies

An artistic sampling of some far-away worlds.