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News Brief: NASA has hit the pause button on observations by its most prolific planet-hunting probe, the Kepler space telescope, so that it can download 51 days’ worth science data without interruption. The reason? Kepler’s fuel tanks are close to empty. After the download, Kepler will resume data gathering — that is, assuming there’s any fuel left. Kepler has detected 2,650 confirmed planets, including 24 planets that were added to the list just last week. The data yet to be analyzed should yield hundreds more. Even though the nine-year-old telescope has gone far beyond its original one-year mission, astronomers are mourning its impending demise. There’s consolation in the fact that NASA’s planet-hunting TESS telescope is ramping up after its launch in April. Here’s a sampling of the reaction:

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