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New Year’s Day Asteroid Update: Reentry Over Atlantic Ocean

NASA JPL UPDATE January 03, 2014 Several sources confirm that the first discovered asteroid in 2014, designated 2014 AA, entered Earth’s atmosphere late Jan. 1 (Jan. 2 Universal time) over the mid-Atlantic Ocean. The Catalina Sky Survey operating near Tucson, Ariz. discovered this very small asteroid — 6 to 9 feet (2 to 3 meters) in size — early on ... Read More »

Hubble Sees Clouds on Two Super-Worlds

NASA December 31, 2013 Scientists using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have characterized the atmospheres of two of the most common type of planets in the Milky Way galaxy and found both may be blanketed with clouds. The planets are GJ 436b, located 36 light-years from Earth in the constellation Leo, and GJ 1214b, 40 light-years away in the constellation Ophiuchus. ... Read More »

Update: Astronauts Finish ISS Repair Work

NASA December 24, 2013 (Updated Story) Following two spacewalks to replace a degraded pump module on the truss, or backbone, of the International Space Station, flight controllers in the Mission Control Center at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston successfully restarted the new pump Tuesday night. The pump module controls the flow of ammonia through cooling loops and radiators outside ... Read More »

Prime Asteroid Hunting Spacecraft is Ready for New Mission

NASA JPL December 19, 2013 NASA’s Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE), a spacecraft that made the most comprehensive survey to date of asteroids and comets, has returned its first set of test images in preparation for a renewed mission. NEOWISE discovered more than 34,000 asteroids and characterized 158,000 throughout the solar system during its prime mission in 2010 ... Read More »

Orbital Launch to the ISS Postponed – Critical Spacewalks Planned

NASA December 17, 2013 NASA managers are postponing the upcoming Orbital Sciences commercial cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station to proceed with a series of spacewalks to replace a faulty pump module on the space station. NASA Television will air a news briefing at 3 p.m. EST on Wednesday, Dec. 18 to preview the spacewalks. Orbital Sciences’ Cygnus ... Read More »

Strange Compound Discovered in Crab Nebula

ESA December 12, 2013 Using ESA’s Herschel Space Observatory, a team of astronomers has found first evidence of a noble-gas based molecule in space. A compound of argon, the molecule was detected in the gaseous filaments of the Crab Nebula, one of the most famous supernova remnants in our Galaxy. While argon is a product of supernova explosions, the formation ... Read More »

Space Station Crew Working on Cooling System Malfunction

NASA December 12, 2013 The International Space Station’s Expedition 38 crew worked Thursday with the team on the ground to deal with a malfunction that occurred Wednesday on one of the station’s two external cooling loops that uses ammonia to prevent station systems from overheating. On Wednesday, the pump module on one of the space station’s two external cooling loops ... Read More »

Clay Minerals Found on Europa Hint at Comet Impact

NASA JPL December 11, 2013 A new analysis of data from NASA’s Galileo mission has revealed clay-type minerals at the surface of Jupiter’s icy moon Europa that appear to have been delivered by a spectacular collision with an asteroid or comet. This is the first time such minerals have been detected on Europa’s surface. The types of space rocks that ... Read More »

MRO Reveals New Dark Markings on Mars – Possibly Water

NASA December 10, 2013 NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has revealed to scientists slender dark markings — possibly due to salty water – that advance seasonally down slopes surprisingly close to the Martian equator. “The equatorial surface region of Mars has been regarded as dry, free of liquid or frozen water, but we may need to rethink that,” said Alfred McEwen ... Read More »

Juno Spacecraft Makes First Earth-Moon Flyby Video

NASA JPL December 10, 2013 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, the largest planet in our solar system. One of Juno’s sensors, a special kind of ... Read More »

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