HEC: About the Habitable Exoplanets Catalog

The Habitable Exoplanets Catalog (HEC) is an online database of potential habitable exoplanets discoveries for scientists, educators, and the general public. It uses various habitability assessments to identify, classify, and compare exoplanets, including any exomoons. The catalog is maintained by the Planetary Habitability Laboratory @ UPR Arecibo and is updated as new data is available.

The first confirmed exoplanets were detected on 1992 from the Arecibo Observatory in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. These were planets around an exotic form of stars called Pulsars. On 1995 the first exoplanet in a more familiar star, a Sun-like star, was discovered from the Haute-Provence Observatory in Haute-Provence, France. Shortly after, the first exoplanet catalog to track these discoveries was created in the Paris Observatory in Paris, France. Almost twenty years later we are starting to discover potentially habitable exoplanets, those that might support life as we know it. On 2011 HEC was created by the Planetary Habitability Laboratory @ UPR Arecibo to track these new discoveries.

HEC uses databases of confirmed exoplanets, NASA Kepler Candidates, and other sources to independently identify and assess those objects most favorable for global surface life, as we know it. The catalog is updated as new results are available. The study of exoplanets is very challenging and new observations might confirm or discard any of the listed exoplanets in the catalog at any time.

Graphical representations of HEC candidates are available in the RESULTS section. More details about these objects are available in the DATA section. Check the PRIMER or FAQ pages for a general introduction about habitable worlds and the catalog.

HEC is a project of the Planetary Habitability Laboratory @ University of Puerto Rico at Arecibo (phl.upr.edu) with the collaboration of various international scientists and groups.


Special thanks to: James Kasting from Penn State and Antigona Segura from UNAM. Special mentions to: Dennis M. Myers for his suggestions to use Class O and E for hyposychroplanets and hyperthermoplanets, respectively, as part of our Thermal Classification for Planets. Bibb Bretti for suggesting to include Gliese 581g in the list of unconfirmed exoplanets.

Please send any questions, additions, corrections, and suggestions to the project director Prof. Abel Méndez.
Direct Link to HEC is http://phl.upr.edu/hec