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Vote Now! Most Intriguing Alien Planets of 2011

Kepler-20e: Alien Planet Smaller Than Earth

NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle

NASA capped the year 2011 as it began, with the announcement of Kepler-20e, the smallest alien planet yet found, which orbits a star 950 light-years from Earth.

Kepler-20e is only about 87 percent the width of Earth. It is 6,900 miles wide. The Earth is about 7,900 miles wide.

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Space.com Staff
Space.com Staff

Space.com is the premier source of space exploration, innovation and astronomy news, chronicling (and celebrating) humanity's ongoing expansion across the final frontier. Originally founded in 1999, Space.com is, and always has been, the passion of writers and editors who are space fans and also trained journalists. Our current news team consists of Editor-in-Chief Tariq Malik; Editor Hanneke Weitering, Senior Space Writer Mike Wall; Senior Writer Meghan Bartels; Senior Writer Chelsea Gohd, Senior Writer Tereza Pultarova and Staff Writer Alexander Cox, focusing on e-commerce. Senior Producer Steve Spaleta oversees our space videos, with Diana Whitcroft as our Social Media Editor.