Tag Archives: NASA

Life on Mars: Curiosity finds a promising lake bed

After about two decades of poking around Mars, it’s clear that scientists don’t expect to find life, certainly not on the surface [SciTechStory: Life on Mars: If it exists, is below the surface]. There are no Martian yetis, or if any life at all, nothing bigger than a bacteria – probably living deep below the […]
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Planck’s Universe

Cosmic Microwave Background radiation map of the Universe…Credit: ESA, Planck Collaboration The big news for this week and I do mean big as in as big as the whole Universe, is a new collation and analysis of data from the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Planck observatory mission. The new analysis reveals several things about the […]
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The day of the asteroid and meteor

It certainly grabbed the media’s attention – the meteor that streaked across Russian skies. There was far less attention for the unseen asteroid that slipped by the Earth a few hours later. Still, it was a double feature, two pieces of celestial rock that just happened to cross the path of Earth within a single […]
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Curiosity has just begun

About a quarter million people were watching NASA TV as the Mars rover Curiosity was put down on the surface of Mars. Not bad for 1:30AM on the east coast of the U.S. The room at JPL mission headquarters exploded with shouts, cheers and cries of joy. Of course, these men and a few women […]
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Outta Here: Voyager 1 exits our solar system

Voyager 1, distant ambassador….Credit: NASA Take a brief moment to think about Voyager 1, the very first human-made thing to leave our Solar System. Voyager 1 is a probe launched by the American space agency NASA in 1977 (make that 34 years and 9 months ago), which is now tootling along through the heliosheath, the […]
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The Dragon is in orbit

I hope this will be a date with a footnote attached, but little remembered. Today, May 22, 2012 at 07:44 GMT the SpaceX, Inc. Falcon 9 rocket lofted into the Florida sky, rising above the ghostly gantries of NASA’s now dead space programs. It is the first ‘private’ or ‘commercial’ rocket launched to bring supplies […]
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Mining Near-Earth Asteroids: The trillion dollar enticement

Asteroid Ida…….credit: NASA/JPL The race to put a man on the Moon between the United States and the Soviet Union is long over. NASA got there first, national glory was achieved and then NASA and the American public lost interest in the Moon. The Russians’ all out space effort collapsed with the Soviet Union and […]
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Off to Mars. Yes and no.

It hasn’t escaped notice that the Russians (with a Chinese probe) tried sending a mission to Mars, Fobos-Grunt-Yinghuo, which spluttered into low Earth orbit and presumably will fall back to Earth. Meanwhile, NASA the U.S. space agency lofted another Mars mission, MSL Curiosity, that is happily on its way to the Red Planet. If this […]
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Zircons provide new reading on the atmosphere for origin of life

How can you tell what the atmosphere of Earth was like four billion years ago? The answer is simple, although technically difficult to do – read the rocks. Geologists and now astrogeologists and astrobiologists go back to the question of what the atmosphere was like during the early history of Earth because it is one […]
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Asteroid 2005 YU55: No impact on the neighborhood

Asteroid 2005 YU55 photographed in passing…Credit: NASA November 9, 2011: It was a reminder for the neighborhood (Earth and Moon) that strangers pass in the night. Night being metaphorical in this case because the asteroid 2005 YU55 actually took about three days to orbit through the vicinity of the Earth and Moon. As asteroids go, […]
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