A mission NASA is designing to probe the nature of mysterious dark energy could discover thousands of alien planets as well. NASA's proposed Wide-field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) mission aims to help researchers better understand dark energy, the puzzling stuff that makes up about three-quarters of the universe and drives its accelerating expansion.
There's a new telescope on the horizon -- and it's huge. NASA is planning to launch the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope, or WFIRST, in the mid-2020s. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/nasa-telescope-wfirst-video_us_56c72954e4b0928f5a6b869c