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Space exploration News

ESA's Rosetta probe enters orbit at Churyumov-Gerasimenko comet

Paris - The European Space Agency’s (ESA) comet-chaser mission, already 10 years in transit, has rendezvoused with its target the 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko comet. The ESA Rosetta probe enters orbit around the comet today, Wednesday.
In the Media by Robert Myles

NASA's Mars 2020 rover to unlock more Martian secrets

Washington - NASA’s successor to the Mars Curiosity rover will head to the red planet in 2020 carrying a payload of scientific instruments that will explore Mars as never before.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

Astronomy: Most precise measurement of exoplanet to date

Pasadena - Aided by two NASA telescopes, astronomers have made the most precise calculation yet of the size of an exoplanet — a planet outwith our solar system.
In the Media by Robert Myles

NASA's asteroid sample mission gets go-ahead

Littleton - An innovative NASA space mission with the ambitious aim of collecting samples from an asteroid in 2018 was given the green light, Wednesday.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

Astronomers solve decades old celestial archaeology mystery

Leicester - New research from an international team of astronomers from the UK's University of Leicester and the University of Arizona sheds light on how stars reaching the end of their useful life and collapsing in on themselves become polluted.
In the Media by Robert Myles

Mars One and Uwingu join in launching Mars Crater Naming Project

Mars One, a not-for-profit foundation working to establish the world's first human settlement on the planet Mars, has partnered with Uwingu, a company with the primary mission of creating a personal connection between the world and space exploration.
In the Media by Karen Graham - 4 comments

We may go to Jupiter by 2025 and find life there

NASA hopes to launch a mission to Jupiter's moon Europa, the solar system's most likely heavenly body to hold alien life, by 2025.
In the Media by Megan Morreale - 3 comments

ESA's new Plato planet hunter will examine a million star systems

Warwick - The European Space Agency announced Wednesday that a new space-based observatory to search for planets orbiting alien stars will form the third plank of the ESA’s medium-class (M-class) science missions.
In the Media by Robert Myles

Asteroid mission offers (nominal) immortality for all

Tucson - NASA and the Planetary Society have issued a global invitation to individuals to have their names etched on a microchip that will be on board a spacecraft launching in 2016. The spacecraft will rendezvous with the asteroid Bennu two years later.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

China: Chang'e 3 and 'Jade Rabbit' landing 'a complete success'

Beijing - China has declared its Chang'e -3 lunar landing “a complete success” after the exploration robot Yutu (Jade Rabbit) and its mother ship photographed each other and sent the images to Earth.
In the Media by Igor I. Solar - 5 comments

India's Mars Orbiter leaves Earth orbit heading for Red Planet

Bangalore - India’s Mangalyaan Mars Orbiter spacecraft left Earth orbit early Sunday, at the start of a 300-day trek, covering 680 million kilometers (425 million miles), to Mars.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 2 comments

Remarkable footage of Red Planet marks 10 years of Mars Express

Cologne - As the European Space Agency’s Mars Express orbiter approaches the tenth anniversary of arrival in orbit at the Red Planet, the ESA has assembled a fascinating topographical ‘fly-by’ of Mars.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

Op-Ed: NASA, plutonium and a tale of systemic mistakes

Sydney - Plutonium 238 is the fuel for Voyager as it leaves the solar system, and for many other space missions. The trouble is that the fuel is out of fashion, not being made for years, and the remaining stock is already mortgaged for other uses.
In the Media by Paul Wallis - 15 comments

Op-Ed: Jupiter’s moons give better chances in finding life than Mars

A new mission called JUICE may give better chances in finding life elsewhere in the Solar System as actual living organisms, compared to the desiccated and irradiated remnants of long dead microbes that scientists hope to find on the Red Planet
In the Media by Eko Armunanto - 4 comments

ESA’s new Biomass satellite to measure Earth’s precious resources

The European Space Agency (ESA) announced Monday, the selection of ‘Biomass’ as the subject of its seventh Earth Explorer mission. The planned satellite will measure, to great accuracy, biomass and carbon stored in the world’s forests.
In the Media by Robert Myles

Cassini spacecraft's startling images of massive Saturn hurricane

NASA has released some of the most breathtaking images yet from the Cassini-Huygens Saturn orbiter, showing a gigantic hurricane gyrating around Saturn’s north pole.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 6 comments

NASA’s PhoneSat mission using smartphones as low cost satellites

Wallops Island - Last Sunday NASA launched into Earth orbit three satellites in the shape of three smartphones likely to be the lowest cost satellites ever as part of NASA’s PhoneSat mission.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 2 comments

35 years on, is Voyager 1 bidding farewell to the Solar System?

On September 5 1977, NASA’s Voyager 1 left Cape Canaveral. Thirty-five years later, Voyager continues to transmit data back to Earth and may now, finally, have stepped beyond the perimeter of the Solar System.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 2 comments

Solar event gives prospect of spectacular auroras this weekend

Early yesterday morning NASA released details of an observed solar phenomenon, an Earth-directed coronal mass ejection with the potential to disrupt satellites and communications over the next one to three days.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 2 comments

Fancy an invigorating bath — How about Jupiter's moon Europa?

Could Jupiter's moon Europa could be the health spa destination of the future? Maybe. A new research paper by scientists from California Institute of Technology and NASA/JPL indicates that part of Europa's surface consists of Epsom salts!
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

How a spot of re-decoration might avert an asteroid collision

A theoretical solution using a coat of paint could prevent a future near-Earth asteroid attack, according to a student whose novel solution won a 2012 ‘Move an Asteroid’ technical paper competition.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

NASA's Curiosity rover drills first rock samples on Mars

NASA announced yesterday that its Mars rover Curiosity had drilled its first rock sample on the Red Planet, the first time any robotic explorer had successfully drilled for rock samples on another planet.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 5 comments

Russian-US rocket plunges into Pacific 40 seconds after launch

There were reports this morning that a joint Russian-US rocket carrying a satellite into orbit had crashed into the Pacific Ocean shortly after launch.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

NASA joins ESA's Euclid mission to explore Universe's dark forces

NASA and the European Space Agency this week announced that NASA would be participating in the ESA’s Euclid mission scheduled for launch in 2020. Euclid is a space telescope whose purpose is to investigate cosmic dark matter and dark energy.
In the Media by Robert Myles

ESA space launches in 2013: A busy year for European Space Agency

The European Space Agency has released details of space missions scheduled in 2013 and developments in prospect with current orbiters and satellites.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 2 comments

‘Nile river’ spotted by Cassini on Saturn moon Titan

NASA scientists report that the Cassini mission has sighted a remarkable likeness to Egypt’s river Nile on Saturn’s large moon Titan. The river valley runs more than 200 miles (about 320 kilometres) from its source to what appears to be a large sea.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 1 comment

Stunning galactic bridge revealed by ESA Planck space telescope

The Planck space telescope operated by the European Space Agency (ESA) this week unveiled a spectacular image of a bridge of hot gases connecting a pair of galaxy clusters across millions of light years of space.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 3 comments

Mars Curiosity Rover: NASA hints at historic discovery

NASA talked tantalisingly about a discovery made by its Mars Curiosity Rover this week that could "get in the history books" but finding out what exactly that discovery may be will have to wait a few weeks until NASA has checked results.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 4 comments

Kepler Space Telescope’s continuing mission to seek exoplanets

During the three or so years since launch NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope has discovered many new planets outwith our solar system – exoplanets. NASA has announced that Kepler will continue boldly seeking out new celestial bodies, at least till 2016.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 2 comments

Mars rover Curiosity digs deep and finds something like Hawaii

NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity has continued its solitary mission to the Red Planet, this week making a start on analysing soil samples scooped up from the Martian surface. Initial results show similarities between Martian soil and soil found on Hawaii.
In the Media by Robert Myles - 2 comments
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Space exploration Image

Herschel’s view of the Horsehead Nebula in the context of its surroundings. The image is a composi...
ESA/Herschel/PACS, SPIRE/N. Schneider, Ph. André, V. Könyves (CEA Saclay, France) for the “Gould
Herschel’s view of the Horsehead Nebula in the context of its surroundings. The image is a composite of the wavelengths of 70 microns (blue), 160 microns (green) and 250 microns (red), and covers 4.5x1.5 degrees. The image is oriented with northeast towards the left of the image and southwest towards the right.
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Europa  Jupiter s ice covered satellite  as seen by the Galileo spacecraft. Europa is about 3 160 ki...
Wikimedia Commons
Europa, Jupiter's ice covered satellite, as seen by the Galileo spacecraft. Europa is about 3,160 kilometers (1,950 miles) in diameter, or about the size of Earth's moon. The image was taken on September 7, 1996, at a range of 677,000 kilometers.
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Untitled
NASA
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Happier days: A Sea Launch platform launch in 2009 putting an Italian SIRCAL satellite into geostati...
Wikimedia Commons - via jurvetson on Flickr
Happier days: A Sea Launch platform launch in 2009 putting an Italian SIRCAL satellite into geostationary orbit
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The ESA s Gaia satellite will measure the positions of a very large number of stars with unprecedent...
European Space Agency - ESA Gaia Project
The ESA's Gaia satellite will measure the positions of a very large number of stars with unprecedented accuracy. The distances and motions of stars in the Milky Way will be determined with extraordinary precision, allowing astronomers to determine our Galaxy's 3-dimensional structure, space velocities of its constituent stars and, from these data, further our understanding of our Galaxy's origin and evolution.
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Artists impression of Kepler Space Telescope
NASA/JPL
Artists impression of Kepler Space Telescope
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When the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft arrives at asteroid Bennu  it will study the asteroid from a distance...
NASA/University of Arizona
When the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft arrives at asteroid Bennu, it will study the asteroid from a distance before swooping down and grabbing a sample. On board of the craft will be the names of everybody participating in the "Messages to Bennu!" campaign.
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The original Lafayette meteorite  discovered  in a geological collection in 1931  is classed as a Ma...
Smithsonian Institution
The original Lafayette meteorite 'discovered' in a geological collection in 1931, is classed as a Martian meteorite having originated from Mars.
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Panorama of the Swann Range of hills on lunar surface taken by Apollo 15 astronaut Jim Irwin with th...
NASA
Panorama of the Swann Range of hills on lunar surface taken by Apollo 15 astronaut Jim Irwin with the Hasselblad camera that is to be auctioned.
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Illustration of CheMin dual-cell geometry. Exploded view of dual-cell assembly showing windows  tuni...
JPL NASA
Illustration of CheMin dual-cell geometry. Exploded view of dual-cell assembly showing windows, tuning-fork assembly, and piezodriver (left). Assembled cell, ready for testing in testbed (right).
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Comparing the size of the James Webb Space Telescope due for launch in 2018 with the Hubble Space Te...
Wikimedia Commons - Bobarino
Comparing the size of the James Webb Space Telescope due for launch in 2018 with the Hubble Space Telescope
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Valles Marineris on Mars
ESA DLR Mars Express
Valles Marineris on Mars
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An image provided by NASA of the lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE)
NASA Ames
An image provided by NASA of the lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE)
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A hydrocarbon river near the north pole of Saturn moon Titan  photo taken by the Cassini spacecraft ...
NASA/JPL
A hydrocarbon river near the north pole of Saturn moon Titan, photo taken by the Cassini spacecraft on Sept. 26, 2012. The river valley stretches more than 200 miles from its ‘source’ to a large hydrocarbon sea.
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The heliospheric current sheet results from the influence of the Sun s rotating magnetic field on th...
NASA - Werner Heil
The heliospheric current sheet results from the influence of the Sun's rotating magnetic field on the plasma in the interplanetary medium (solar wind). The wavy spiral shape has been likened to a ballerina's skirt.
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A Falcon 9 rocket carrying a small science satellite for Canada is seen as it is launched from a new...
With permission by Reuters / Gene Blevins
A Falcon 9 rocket carrying a small science satellite for Canada is seen as it is launched from a newly refurbished launch pad in Vandenberg Air Force Station
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The range of Hasselblad cameras used on Apollo missions to the moon. The Hasselblad to be auctioned ...
NASA/Lunar and Planetary Institute.
The range of Hasselblad cameras used on Apollo missions to the moon. The Hasselblad to be auctioned, used on the Apollo 15 mission is similar to that shown bottom right.
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Artist s impression Cassini during the Saturn Orbit Insertion
NASA
Artist's impression Cassini during the Saturn Orbit Insertion
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Ariane 5 solid booster is the main workhorse of the European Space Agency
Tom Page
Ariane 5 solid booster is the main workhorse of the European Space Agency
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An artist s impression of exoplanet GJ 1214b. Researchers used the Hubble Space Telescope to reveal ...
NASA, ESA, & G. Bacon/STScI, STScI-PRC14-06
An artist's impression of exoplanet GJ 1214b. Researchers used the Hubble Space Telescope to reveal cloudy weather on alien world.
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