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Curiosity Rover Finds Large Iron Meteorite on Mars

NASA July 15, 2014 This rock encountered by NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is an iron meteorite called “Lebanon,” similar in shape and luster to iron meteorites found on Mars by the previous generation of rovers, Spirit and Opportunity.  Lebanon is about 2 yards or 2 meters wide (left to right, from this angle). The smaller piece in the foreground is ... Read More »

Boulder-sized Asteroid to be Captured, NASA Says

NASA June 19, 2014 NASA is on the hunt for an asteroid to capture with a robotic spacecraft, redirect to a stable orbit around the moon, and send astronauts to study in the 2020s — all on the agency’s human Path to Mars. Agency officials announced on Thursday recent progress to identify candidate asteroids for its Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), ... Read More »

Near-Earth Asteroid 2014 HQ124 – Mapped by Radar

NASA JPL June 12, 2014 NASA scientists using Earth-based radar have produced sharp views of a recently discovered asteroid as it slid silently past our planet. Captured on June 8, 2014, the new views of the object designated “2014 HQ124” are some of the most detailed radar images of a near-Earth asteroid ever obtained. An animation of the rotating asteroid ... Read More »

New Exoplanet is Much Too Massive for Theories

NASA JPL June 02, 2014 Astronomers have discovered a rocky planet that weighs 17 times as much as Earth and is more than twice as large in size. This discovery has planet formation theorists challenged to explain how such a world could have formed. “We were very surprised when we realized what we had found,” said astronomer Xavier Dumusque of ... Read More »

Mars Slammed by Big Meteor Impact

NASA JPL May 22, 2014 Researchers have discovered on the Red Planet the largest fresh meteor-impact crater ever firmly documented with before-and-after images. The images were captured by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The crater spans half the length of a football field and first appeared in March 2012. The impact that created it likely was preceded by an explosion in ... Read More »

Hubble Telescope Enters 25th Year of Service

NASA May 12, 2014 On April 24, 1990, the space shuttle Discovery lifted off from Earth with the Hubble Space Telescope nestled securely in its bay. The following day, Hubble was released into space, ready to peer into the vast unknown of space. NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope recently marked its 24th year in space and to celebrate its 25th year, ... Read More »

Jupiter’s Moon Ganymede May Harbor Ice-Ocean Layers

NASA JPL May 01, 2014 The largest moon in our solar system, a companion to Jupiter named Ganymede, might have ice and oceans stacked up in several layers like a club sandwich, according to new NASA-funded research that models the moon’s makeup. Previously, the moon was thought to harbor a thick ocean sandwiched between just two layers of ice, one ... Read More »

Laser Communication Breakthrough – 80 Megabits/sec from Moon

ESA April 25, 2014 Just before NASA’s latest Moon mission ended last week, an ESA telescope received laser signals from the spacecraft, achieving data speeds like those used by many to watch movies at home via fibre-optic Internet. During an intense, three-day effort starting on 1 April, ESA’s Optical Ground Station in Spain received data signals via laser from the ... Read More »

Has a Second Earth Just Been Discovered?

NASA April 17, 2014 Using NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope, astronomers have discovered the first Earth-size planet orbiting a star in the “habitable zone” — the range of distance from a star where liquid water might pool on the surface of an orbiting planet. The discovery of Kepler-186f confirms that planets the size of Earth exist in the habitable zone of ... Read More »

3-D Printing to Revolutionize Space Travel

ESA April 15, 2014 This close-up shows a titanium ball manufactured by 3D printing. ESA is investigating the potential of this promising new technology to transform the way space missions are put together. 1. Items impossible to make any other way “This design is a perfect example of additive manufacturing (AM),” explains ESA materials engineer Benoit Bonvoisin. “These balls are ... Read More »

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