I have a new story published over at New Scientist.
EUROPEAN planet hunters are stealing a march on their American rivals. After last week's discovery of a "habitable" extrasolar planet the mass of five Earths - the smallest yet found - European astronomers have had more good news. Their new space telescope, called COROT, is proving 10 times as sensitive as expected. The spacecraft seems sharp enough to detect planets as small as Earth, a task widely thought impossible in advance of the launch of NASA's Kepler telescope in October 2008.
Read the full story for free here.