The planets that are best understood are the four terrestrial planets of our own solar system. Applying the detailed understanding gleaned from these bodies is crucial in our interpretation of exoplanetary systems. With the ongoing programs to search for planets around nearby stars, as well as upcoming ground- and space-based surveys, we can anticipate huge growth in the number and information on detected rocky exoplanets in the coming decades. As the characterisation of these new planetary systems proceeds it will in turn improve understanding of our own solar system, and in particular of how potentially habitable Earth-like planets may form, evolve, and are distributed throughout the galaxy.
The Rocky Worlds conference series aims to bring together planetary scientists, astronomers, and earth scientists to foster discussion and build the collaborations that will pave the way for the next decade of rocky exoplanet discovery and characterisation.
Exoplanet Mission Timeline
Image credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser; ESA
Planetary Science Missions
Image credit: NASA