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Your online destination for news articles on planets, cosmology, NASA, space missions, and more. You’ll also find information on how to observe upcoming visible sky events such as meteor showers, solar and lunar eclipses, key planetary appearances, comets, and asteroids.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Arizona State University’s Mars images star in “The Martian”

Images of Mars taken by a visual and infrared camera designed at Arizona State University (ASU) take a star turn in the new hit movie “The Martian.” Last November, the film production company for "The Martian" approached ASU's School of ...
Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Nobel Prizes in physics awarded for neutrino discoveries

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2015 recognizes Takaaki Kajita in Japan and Arthur B. McDonald in Canada for their key contributions to the experiments, which demonstrated that neutrinos change identities. This metamorphosis requires that neutrinos have m...

Mysterious ripples found racing through planet-forming disk

Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and the European Southern Observatory's (ESO) Very Large Telescope in Chile have discovered never-before-seen moving features within the dusty disk surrounding the young nearby star AU Microscopii (AU M...
Monday, October 5, 2015

New way to weigh a star

Until now, scientists have determined the mass of stars, planets and moons by studying their motion in relation to others nearby, using the gravitational pull between the two as the basis for their calculations. However, in the case of young pulsars,...
Friday, October 2, 2015

Rosetta’s first peek at the comet’s dark side

Since its arrival at Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (Comet 67P), the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Rosetta spacecraft has been surveying the surface and the environment of this curiously shaped body. But for a long time, a portion of the nucle...
Thursday, October 1, 2015

Pluto’s big moon Charon reveals a colorful and violent history

At half the diameter of Pluto, Charon is the largest satellite relative to its planet in the solar system. Many New Horizons scientists expected Charon to be a monotonous, crater-battered world; instead, they’re finding a landscape covered with...

NASA narrows the field for future key planetary missions

NASA has selected five science investigations for refinement during the next year as a first step in choosing one or two missions for flight opportunities as early as 2020. The submitted proposals would study Venus, near-Earth objects, and a variety ...
Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Dawn team shares colorful new maps and surprising observations

Mysteries and insights about Ceres are being discussed this week at the European Planetary Science Conference in Nantes, France. NASA’s Dawn spacecraft is providing scientists with tantalizing views and other data about the intriguing dwarf pla...

A fresh perspective on an extraordinary cluster of galaxies

Galaxy clusters are often described by superlatives. After all, they are huge conglomerations of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter and represent the largest structures in the universe held together by gravity. Galaxy clusters tend to be poor at pro...
Tuesday, September 29, 2015

How Rosetta's rubber ducky comet got its shape

Two comets collided at low speed in the early solar system to give rise to the distinctive “rubber duck” shape of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, said Rosetta scientists. The origin of the comet’s double-lobed form has been a key ...

Searching for orphan stars amid starbirth fireworks

Gemini Observatory has released one of the most detailed images ever obtained of emerging gas jets streaming from a region of newborn stars. The region, known as the Herbig-Haro 24 (HH 24) complex, contains no less than six jets streaming from a smal...
Monday, September 28, 2015

Liquid water still flows on Mars

New findings from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) provide the strongest evidence yet that liquid water flows intermittently on present-day Mars. Using an imaging spectrometer on MRO, researchers detected signatures of hydrated minerals on s...

Black hole is 30 times expected size

The central supermassive black hole of a recently discovered galaxy has been found to be far larger than should be possible, according to current theories of galactic evolution. New work carried out by astronomers at Keele University and the Universi...
Friday, September 25, 2015

Eleven-year cosmic search leads to black hole rethink

One hundred years since Einstein proposed gravitational waves as part of his general theory of relativity, an 11-year search performed with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization’s (CSIRO) Parkes telescope has shown th...

Opportunity Mars rover preparing for active winter

NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity is conducting a “walkabout” survey of “Marathon Valley,” where the rover’s operators plan to use the vehicle through the upcoming martian winter and beyond, to study the co...


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