The public push initiated on BBC Two’s Stargazing Live series to find planets beyond our Solar System has had an immediate result.
A viewer who answered the call has helped spot a world that appears to be circling a star dubbed SPH10066540.
The planet is described as being similar in size to our Neptune and circles its parent every 90 days.
Chris Holmes from Peterborough found it by looking through time-lapsed images of stars on Planethunters.org.
The website hosts data gathered by Nasa’s Kepler space telescope, and asks volunteers to sift the information for anything unusual that might have been missed in a computer search.
“I’ve never had a telescope. I’ve had a passing interest in where things are in the sky, but never had any more knowledge about it than that,” Mr Holmes told BBC News.
“Being involved in a project like this and actually being the one to find something is a very exciting position.”
NASA will host a news briefing at 11 a.m. PDT, Thursday, Sept. 15, to announce a new discovery by the Kepler mission. The briefing will be held in the Syvertson auditorium, building N-201, at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif. The event will be carried live on NASA Television and the agency’s website at
Kepler is the first NASA mission capable of finding Earth-size planets in or near the “habitable zone,” the region in a planetary system where liquid water can exist on the surface of the orbiting planet.