Spitzer Discovers a New Supernova
March 6, 2014 | NASA
“The closest supernova of its kind to be observed in the last few decades has sparked a global observing campaign involving legions of instruments on the ground and in space.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
Lunar Impact and Afterglow Visible for 8 Seconds
Artistic image by NASA
March 2, 2014 | Nature
The impact of a large object onto the lunar surface in September, 2013 produced a flash and an afterglow that was bright enough to have been seen from Earth with the unaided eye for about eight seconds. The flash was the result of the tremendous impact speed generating enough heat to melt the target and impactor
Debris from a Massive Supernova Explosion|
February 27, 2014 | NASA
“This artist’s concept depicts the explosive death of a massive star, followed by the creation of a disk made up of the star’s ashes. [...] Astronomers believe planets might form in this dead star’s disk.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
Moving at 2.5 Million MPH|
February 25, 2014 | NASA
“The red arc in this infrared image from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope is a giant shock wave, created by a speeding star known as Kappa Cassiopeiae. [...]
It is a massive, hot supergiant moving at around 2.5 million mph [...]. But what really makes the star stand out in this image is the surrounding, streaky red glow of material in its path. Such structures are called bow shocks, and they can often be seen in front of the fastest, most massive stars in the galaxy.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
How Stars Explode|
February 23, 2014 | NASA
“One of the biggest mysteries in astronomy, how stars blow up in supernova explosions, finally is being unraveled with the help of NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
First Mission to Land a Probe on a Comet|
January 28, 2014 | NASA
“Three NASA science instruments are being prepared for check-out operations aboard the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft, which is set to become the first to orbit a comet and land a probe on its nucleus in November.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
A Star that is Almost Identical to Our Sun|
January 19, 2014 | ESO Observatory
A “solar twin” has been discovered in the Messier 67 star cluster by the the HARPs planet hunter.
First Meteor Shower of 2014 Peaks Friday|
January 5, 2014 | Christian Science Monitor
The Quadrantid meteor shower is expected to peak on Friday afternoon in the United States, but people in other parts of the world might see 60 to 120 meteors per hour. People in the United States might see a few meteors before sunrise and after sunset.
Related: What Causes a Meteor Shower?
Learn About Exoplanets|
December 29, 2013 | MIT on YouTube
This video provides a great introduction to exoplanets.
Aurorae Over Alaska|
December 19, 2013 | USA.gov
The USA.gov blog has a number of photos of aurorae over Alaska from the Bureau of Land Management.
The Temperature Mystery of Planetary Atmospheres|
December 19, 2013 | University of Washington
An atmospheric peculiarity the Earth shares with Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune is likely common to billions of planets, and knowing that may help in the search for potentially habitable worlds.
China Successfully Lands a Moon Rover|
December 15, 2013 | CNN
China has landed a spacecraft on the Moon and successfully deployed a six-wheeled lunar rover.
Earth and Moon Seen by Passing Juno Spacecraft|
December 15, 2013 | NASA on YouTube.com
“When NASA’s Juno spacecraft flew past Earth on Oct. 9, 2013, it received a boost in speed of more than 8,800 mph (about 7.3 kilometer per second), which set it on course for a July 4, 2016, rendezvous with Jupiter.
One of Juno’s sensors, a special kind of camera optimized to track faint stars, also had a unique view of the Earth-moon system. The result was an intriguing, low-resolution glimpse of what our world would look like to a visitor from afar.” Quoted from the NASA video release.
Ocean Currents and Life Under the Shell of Europa|
December 5, 2013 | The University of Texas at Austin
“Researchers have shown that the subsurface ocean on Jupiter’s moon Europa may have deep currents and circulation patterns with heat and energy transfers capable of sustaining biological life.” Quoted from The University of Texas at Austin press release.
Related: Life on Europa?
Comet ISON Obituary|
December 1, 2013 | NBC News
“I do think that something emerged from the sun, but probably a very small nucleus or ‘rubble pile.’ and I fear that may have now dissolved.” Karl Battams, an astrophysicist at the Naval Research Laboratory.
IceCube Researchers Detect 28 Neutrinos
November 27, 2013 | National Science Foundation
“Researchers with the IceCube Collaboration have [...] observed 28 very high-energy neutrinos that constitute the first solid evidence for astrophysical neutrinos from cosmic accelerators. [...] IceCube is an [...] astrophysical telescope deployed deep in the Antarctic ice (from 1.4 to 2.4 km depth), but looks over the entire universe, detecting neutrinos coming through the Earth from the Northern skies, as well as from around the Southern skies,” Quoted from the National Science Foundation press release.
GOCE Satellite Falls with No Damage|
November 11, 2013 | USA Today
The European Space Agency said that the Gravity field and steady-state Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE) satellite feel out of orbit and re-entered Earth’s atmosphere early Monday morning. No damage has been reported.
Bedrock Map of Vesta Asteroid|
November 11, 2013 |
“This colorized map from NASA’s Dawn mission shows the types of rocks and minerals distributed around the surface of the giant asteroid Vesta. In this color scheme, red shows diogenite, a type of mineral thought to be formed through magmatic processes deep in the crust. Green shows howardite, a type of surface rock that is made of broken bits of different materials that are excavated, ejected and mixed by meteor impacts…..” Partial quote from the NASA image description.
An Asteroid with Six Comet-Like Tails|
November 11, 2013 | NASA
“This NASA Hubble Space Telescope set of images reveals a never-before-seen set of six comet-like tails radiating from a body in the asteroid belt, designated P/2013 P5.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
Radio Bursts From Beyond our Galaxy?|
November 10, 2013 | NASA
“Astronomers, including a team member from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., have detected the first population of radio bursts known to originate from galaxies beyond our own Milky Way. The sources of the light bursts are unknown, but cataclysmic events, such as merging or exploding stars, are likely the triggers.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
Rare New Microbe Found in Two Distant Clean Rooms|
November 9, 2013 | NASA
“A rare, recently discovered microbe that survives on very little to eat has been found in two places on Earth: spacecraft clean rooms in Florida and South America. Microbiologists often do thorough surveys of bacteria and other microbes in spacecraft clean rooms. Fewer microbes live there than in almost any other environment on Earth, but the surveys are important for knowing what might hitch a ride into space. If extraterrestrial life is ever found, it would be readily checked against the census of a few hundred types of microbes detected in spacecraft clean rooms.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
GOCE Satellite Expected to Fall this Weekend|
November 9, 2013 | New York Times
The European Space Agency’s Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer satellite is expected to fall from orbit this weekend. Space experts believe that 25 to 45 pieces of the craft will survive the fall to earth, with the largest pieces weighing up to 200 pounds. The location of impact is unknown.
India Headed to Mars|
November 4, 2013 | Calgary Herald
If all goes according to plans, India will launch a spacecraft to Mars on Tuesday, November 5th. So far there have been 40 attempts to reach Mars by the United States, the Soviet Union, the European Space Agency, Japan and China. Only 23 missions have been successful.
Observing Galaxies 100X Fainter than Ever Seen Before|
October 31, 2013 | NASA
“NASA’s Hubble, Spitzer and Chandra space telescopes are teaming up to look deeper into the universe than ever before. With a boost from natural “zoom lenses” found in space, they should be able to uncover galaxies that are as much as 100 times fainter than what these three great observatories typically can see.” Quoted from the NASA press release.
Natural Gas Flaring from Space|
October 30, 2013 | Geology.com
We have posted views of Earth from NASA’s Suomi satellite that show night illumination and natural gas flaring for oil industry sites in the Bakken Formation, Eagle Ford Shale, Alaska North Slope, United States Gulf, Mexican Gulf, Venezuela Orinoco Field, Brazil offshore basins, North Sea, North Africa onshore, west Africa offshore, and Persian Gulf.