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Possible Moon Found Around Alien World

NASA JPL April 10, 2014 Titan, Europa, Io and Phobos are just a few members of our solar system’s pantheon of moons. Are there are other moons out there, orbiting planets beyond our sun? NASA-funded researchers have spotted the first signs of an “exomoon,” and though they say it’s impossible to confirm its presence, the finding is a tantalizing first ... Read More »

Ocean Detected on Saturn’s Moon Enceladus

NASA JPL April 03, 2014 NASA’s Cassini spacecraft and Deep Space Network have uncovered evidence Saturn’s moon Enceladus harbors a large underground ocean of liquid water, furthering scientific interest in the moon as a potential home to extraterrestrial microbes. Researchers theorized the presence of an interior reservoir of water in 2005 when Cassini discovered water vapor and ice spewing from ... Read More »

Curiosity Enters Region of Martian Sandstone

NASA JPL March 24, 2014 Variations in the stuff that cements grains together in sandstone have shaped the landscape surrounding NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover and could be a study topic at the mission’s next science waypoint. On a journey with many months yet to go toward prime destinations on the lower slope of Mount Sharp, Curiosity is approaching a site ... Read More »

Space Sunflower Could Help Photograph Exoplanets

NASA JPL March 20, 2014 A spacecraft that looks like a giant sunflower might one day be used to acquire images of Earth-like rocky planets around nearby stars. The prototype deployable structure, called a starshade, is being developed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. The hunt is on for planets that resemble Earth in size, composition and temperature. ... Read More »

Huge Planet Haul – 715 New Worlds Discovered

NASA February 26, 2014 NASA’s Kepler mission announced Wednesday the discovery of 715 new planets. These newly-verified worlds orbit 305 stars, revealing multiple-planet systems much like our own solar system. Nearly 95 percent of these planets are smaller than Neptune, which is almost four times the size of Earth. This discovery marks a significant increase in the number of known ... Read More »

Like Spiders, Pulsars Eat Their Mates

NASA February 20, 2014 Black widow spiders and their Australian cousins, known as redbacks, are notorious for their tainted love, expressed as an unsettling tendency to kill and devour their male partners. Astronomers have noted similar behavior among two rare breeds of binary system that contain rapidly spinning neutron stars, also known as pulsars. “The essential features of black widow ... Read More »

New Map Released of Jupiter’s Moon, Ganymede

NASA February 13, 2014 More than 400 years after its discovery by astronomer Galileo Galilei, the largest moon in the solar system – Jupiter’s moon Ganymede – has finally claimed a spot on the map. A group of scientists led by Geoffrey Collins of Wheaton College has produced the first global geologic map of Ganymede, Jupiter’s seventh moon. The map ... Read More »

Curiosity Rover Crosses a Big Martian Sand Dune

February 11, 2014 The Curiosity Rover used its navigation camera to capture these images (see animation) of a traverse made on February 06, 2014, when the rover crossed a sand dune at the entrance to “Dingo Gap,” inside Gale Crater. On February 09, the rover traversed another 135 feet, making it all the way through the gap. image credits: NASA ... Read More »

New Signs of Fresh Water Flows on Mars

NASA JPL February 10, 2014 NASA spacecraft orbiting Mars have returned clues for understanding seasonal features that are the strongest indication of possible liquid water that may exist today on the Red Planet. The features are dark, finger-like markings that advance down some Martian slopes when temperatures rise. The new clues include corresponding seasonal changes in iron minerals on the ... Read More »

Earth and Moon – Seen From Mars at Night

NASA JPL February 06, 2014 The rover’s view of its original home planet even includes our moon, just below Earth. The images, taken about 80 minutes after sunset during the rover’s 529th Martian day (Jan. 31, 2014) are available at http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA17936 for a broad scene of the evening sky, and at http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA17935 for a zoomed-in view of Earth and the ... Read More »

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