In 1888, astronomer Simon Newcomb uttered now infamous words, stating that “We are probably nearing the limit of all we can know about astronomy.” This was an age just prior to identifying faint nebulae as separate galaxies, Einstein’s theory of special and general relativity, and an era when a hypothetical substance called the aether was said to permeate the cosmos.
Astronomers have caught a rare event, a black hole biting a chunk from an object – either a small star or a big planet – that strayed too close. The feeding happened in galaxy NGC 4845, 47 million light-years away, and was witnessed by ESA’s Integral space observatory and other star-watching stations. A sudden bright [...]
How the sky would look if the planets were as close as the moon?
Move over Kepler. NASA has recently green-lighted two new missions as part of its Astrophysics Explorer Program. These come as the result of four proposals submitted in 2012. The most anticipated and high profile mission is TESS, the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite.
NASA’s FY2014 budget proposal includes a plan to robotically capture a small near-Earth asteroid and redirect it safely to a stable orbit in the Earth-moon system where astronauts can visit and explore it. A spacecraft would capture an asteroid — which hasn’t been chosen yet, but would be about 7 meters (25 feet) wide — in 2019. Then using an Orion space capsule, a crew of about four astronauts would station-keep with the space rock in 2021 to allow for EVAs for exploration.
Part I Part II The Origins Project at ASU presents the final night in the Origins Stories weekend, focusing on the science of storytelling and the storytelling of science. The Storytelling of Science features a panel of esteemed scientists, public intellectuals, and award-winning writers including well-known science educator Bill Nye, astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, evolutionary [...]
Mars has lost much of its original atmosphere, but what’s left remains quite active, recent findings from NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity indicate. Rover team members reported diverse findings today at the European Geosciences Union 2013 General Assembly, in Vienna.
Canadian astronaut and Commander of Expedition 35 demonstrates how astronauts brush their teeth in space. You might be surprised by what he reveals!
This is awesome. Astrophotographer Göran Strand took his 30 gigabytes of image data of the incredible aurora he shot on March 17 (which we shared here) and re-tooled everything to fit into an interactive virtual reality-type video where the viewer can move and pan around in any direction. You can watch below, or click here to see the full screen version and be transported to a small town in northern Sweden called Östersund.
Cosmic Journeys examines the great promise of the Voyager mission and where it will lead us in our grand ambition to move out beyond our home planet. The two Voyager spacecraft are part of an ancient quest to push beyond our boundaries… to see what lies beyond the horizon. Now tens of billions of kilometers from Earth, two spacecraft are streaking out into the void. What will we learn about the Galaxy, the Universe, and ourselves from Voyager’s epic Journey to the stars?