April 2006 Top Story Archives



Venus within ESA probe reach »» Venus within ESA probe reach

[Saturday, April 1, 2006] After its five-month, 400-million-kilometre journey inside our Solar System following its lift-off on 9 November 2005, ESA's Venus Express spacecraft will finally arrive on 11 April at its destination: planet Venus.

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NASA Space Station Status Report 31 March 2006 »» NASA Space Station Status Report 31 March 2006

[Saturday, April 1, 2006] A new crew pulled into port at the International Space Station late Friday to start a six-month mission.

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First Data from Mars Climate Sounder »» First Data from Mars Climate Sounder

[Sunday, April 2, 2006] The Mars Climate Sounder, an instrument on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter designed to monitor daily changes in the global atmosphere of Mars, made its first observations of Mars on March 24, 2006.

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NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Craft Begins Adjusting Orbit »» NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Craft Begins Adjusting Orbit

[Sunday, April 2, 2006] NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter yesterday began a crucial six-month campaign to gradually shrink its orbit into the best geometry for the mission's science work.

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Northrop Grumman Proposes Space Missions to Go ... in 48 Hours or Less »» Northrop Grumman Proposes Space Missions to Go ... in 48 Hours or Less

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] The U.S. Air Force would be able to launch satellites or deliver special purpose payloads in as little as 48 hours using a new, rapid-turnaround launch system proposed by Northrop Grumman Corporation.

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Mars challenge is protecting humans from long space travel and heavy metal ion bombardment »» Mars challenge is protecting humans from long space travel and heavy metal ion bombardment

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] As currently envisioned, during a Mars mission "We run the possibility of losing nearly half the bone mineral in some regions of the body, which would make the astronauts' skeletons the equivalent of a 100-year-old person."

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JP Aerospace: $100 Space Ad »» JP Aerospace: $100 Space Ad

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] These "ads at the edge of the world" are on a platform carried aloft by high altitude weather balloons. During the flight on board, cameras take pictures of the ads with the blackness of space and the curvature of the Earth in the background.

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Journal of Applied Physiology study shows headdown bedrest precisely mimics human physiology in spaceflight »» Journal of Applied Physiology study shows headdown bedrest precisely mimics human physiology in spaceflight

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] A study in the March issue of the Journal of Applied Physiology shows for the first time that a person at "reclining bedrest" reacts almost exactly the way an astronaut's body adapts to space.

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The Universe Trapped In Its Own Web »» The Universe Trapped In Its Own Web

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] Astronomers from the University of Nottingham, UK, and the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias (Spain), have found the first observational evidence that galaxies are not randomly oriented.

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Nearby Dust Clouds In The Milky Way »» Nearby Dust Clouds In The Milky Way

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] Opaque, dark knots of gas and dust are called "Bok globules," and they are absorbing light in the center of the nearby emission nebula and star-forming region, NGC 281.

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NASA Cassini's Best Maps of Jupiter (Cylindrical Map) »» NASA Cassini's Best Maps of Jupiter (Cylindrical Map)

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] These color maps of Jupiter were constructed from images taken by the narrow-angle camera onboard NASA's Cassini spacecraft on Dec. 11 and 12, 2000, as the spacecraft neared Jupiter during its flyby of the giant planet.

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Asteroids: treasures of the past and a threat to the future »» Asteroids: treasures of the past and a threat to the future

[Tuesday, April 4, 2006] If a large asteroid such as the recently identified 2004 VD17 - about 500 m in diameter with a mass of nearly 1000 million tonnes - collides with the Earth it could spell disaster for much of our planet.

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Spitzer Finds Hints of Planet Birth Around A Dead Star »» Spitzer Finds Hints of Planet Birth Around A Dead Star

[Wednesday, April 5, 2006] Spitzer surveyed the scene around a pulsar, the remnant of an exploded star. The infrared telescope found a surrounding disk made up of debris shot out during the star's death throes.

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X-rays reveal 250,000 tons of water released by Deep Impact »» X-rays reveal 250,000 tons of water released by Deep Impact

[Wednesday, April 5, 2006] Over the weekend of 9-10 July 2005 a team of UK and US scientists, led by Dr. Dick Willingale of the University of Leicester, used NASA's Swift satellite to observe the collision of NASA's Deep Impact spacecraft with comet Tempel 1.

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A telescope is born on the floor of the Mediterranean »» A telescope is born on the floor of the Mediterranean

[Wednesday, April 5, 2006] The first detection line of the Antares neutrino telescope, lying under 2,500 meters of water, was connected by Ifremer's remotely operated robot Victor 6000 to the onshore station at La Seyne-sur-Mer (Var) on Thursday 2 March at 12:11.

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Continued Confusion Over Astrobiology Funding by NASA »» Continued Confusion Over Astrobiology Funding by NASA

[Wednesday, April 5, 2006] NASA officials publicly stated last week that they were going to add money back to the previously-cut Astrobiology program. Then, at an internal meeting 3 days later, they changed their mind.

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Remarks by Deputy NASA Administrator Shana Dale at the National Space Symposium »» Remarks by Deputy NASA Administrator Shana Dale at the National Space Symposium

[Wednesday, April 5, 2006] "200 years ago this month, the Lewis and Clark Expedition started their journey back to St Louis, Missouri and eventually Washington, DC after spending the winter in Oregon."

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NASA Celebrates 25th Anniversary of First Shuttle Flight »» NASA Celebrates 25th Anniversary of First Shuttle Flight

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] NASA today launches a series of events to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the first space shuttle flight. On April 12, 1981, shuttle Columbia lifted off with Commander John Young and pilot Robert Crippen.

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Mercury's Formation Impact Splattered Earth with Material »» Mercury's Formation Impact Splattered Earth with Material

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] New computer simulations of Mercury's formation show the fate of material blasted out into space when a large proto-planet collided with a giant asteroid 4.5 billion years ago.

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NASA To Announce New Robotic Lunar Lander Mission in 2008 »» NASA To Announce New Robotic Lunar Lander Mission in 2008

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] "This recent NASA media announcement has to do with the fact that NASA wants to put a lunar lander on LRO as a secondary payload. Raytheon has a proposal in for a design for such a landing vehicle."

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New solar twin could shed light on another Earth »» New solar twin could shed light on another Earth

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] ANU astronomers have discovered a nearby solar twin which may shed light on the search for planets that are similar to Earth and that may even support life.

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Possible brain hormone may unlock mystery of hibernation »» Possible brain hormone may unlock mystery of hibernation

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] The discovery of a possible hibernation hormone in the brain may unlock the mystery behind the dormant state. Hibernation allows animals to survive unscathed--in a state of suspended animation--under the harshest of winter conditions.

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Cassini Image at Saturn Shows 'A' Ring Contains More Debris Than Once Believed »» Cassini Image at Saturn Shows 'A' Ring Contains More Debris Than Once Believed

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] Views of Saturn's stunning ring system from above by the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft now orbiting the planet indicate the prominent A ring contains more debris than once thought, according to a new University of Colorado at Boulder study.

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A blue ring around the planet Uranus - Color is attributed to forces acting on dust »» A blue ring around the planet Uranus - Color is attributed to forces acting on dust

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] The outermost ring of the planet Uranus turns out to have a bright blue color, according to a report in the journal Science. That makes it only the second blue ring to be found in the solar system. The first circles the planet Saturn.

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Brown University Geologists Create 5-Million-Year Climate Record »» Brown University Geologists Create 5-Million-Year Climate Record

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] The record shows slow, steady cooling in the eastern equatorial Pacific, a finding that challenges the notion that the Ice Ages alone sparked a global cooling trend. Results are published in Science.

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Remarks by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin at the National Space Symposium »» Remarks by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin at the National Space Symposium

[Thursday, April 6, 2006] "It is useful to recall that one of the greatest science-enabling endeavors of all time, the voyage 175 years ago of HMS Beagle, was in reality an exploration mission to chart the coast of South America."

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Yuri's Night now on all 7 Continents! »» Yuri's Night now on all 7 Continents!

[Friday, April 7, 2006] "We are very pleased to announce that the 7th CONTINENT will be joining us for this years Yuri's Night for the 3rd time! "

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Outbound for the Frontier, NASA New Horizons Crosses the Orbit of Mars »» Outbound for the Frontier, NASA New Horizons Crosses the Orbit of Mars

[Friday, April 7, 2006] New Horizons' trailblazing journey to the solar system's outermost frontier took it past the orbit of Mars today at 6 a.m. EDT (1000 UTC), 78 days after the spacecraft launched.

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Soggy Sands of Mars? »» Soggy Sands of Mars?

[Friday, April 7, 2006] Cracks and fins in the sand in an American desert look very similar to features seen on Mars and may indicate the recent presence of water at the surface, according to a new study.

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ESA's Venus Express to reach final destination »» ESA's Venus Express to reach final destination

[Friday, April 7, 2006] Now, after having travelled 400 million kilometres in only about five months, the Venus Express spacecraft is about to reach its final destination. The rendezvous is due to take place on 11 April.

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Cosmic Spider is Good Mother - VLT FORS Image of the Inner Parts of the Tarantula Nebula »» Cosmic Spider is Good Mother - VLT FORS Image of the Inner Parts of the Tarantula Nebula

[Friday, April 7, 2006] Hanging above the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) - one of our closest galaxies - in what some describe as a frightening sight, the Tarantula nebula is worth looking at in detail.

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HiRISE Team Releases First Processed Images from NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's Powerful New Camera »» HiRISE Team Releases First Processed Images from NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's Powerful New Camera

[Friday, April 7, 2006] Scientists are delighted with new test images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera.

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Lunar Crater Names for the Columbia Astronauts Provisionally Approved »» Lunar Crater Names for the Columbia Astronauts Provisionally Approved

[Saturday, April 8, 2006] Names for seven craters in the Apollo basin on the Moon have been provisionally approved by the IAU to honor the seven Space Shuttle Columbia astronauts.

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NASA NEEMO 9 Mission Journal Mission Day 1  Monday, April 3, 2006 »» NASA NEEMO 9 Mission Journal Mission Day 1 Monday, April 3, 2006

[Saturday, April 8, 2006] This morning we had no difficulty getting up at 6 - even with the one hour time change over the weekend! The whole team was pretty excited to get started with the mission and we ate breakfast quickly to get our dive equipment ready for the dive boat.

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Expedition 12 Arrives Back on Earth Aboard Soyuz TMA-7 »» Expedition 12 Arrives Back on Earth Aboard Soyuz TMA-7

[Saturday, April 8, 2006] Expedition 12 has left the International Space Station after six-months and has returned to Earth. Their Soyuz TMA-7 spacecraft landed in Kazakhstan tonight at 7:48 p.m. EDT

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New NASA Ames Spacecraft to Look for Ice at Lunar South Pole »» New NASA Ames Spacecraft to Look for Ice at Lunar South Pole

[Monday, April 10, 2006] NASA today announced that a small, 'secondary payload' spacecraft, to be developed by a team at NASA Ames Research Center has been selected to travel to the moon to look for precious water ice at the lunar south pole in October 2008.

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Venus Express enters orbit around the Hothouse Planet »» Venus Express enters orbit around the Hothouse Planet

[Tuesday, April 11, 2006] This morning, at the end of a 153-day and 400-million km cruise into the inner Solar System beginning with its launch on 9 November 2005, ESA’s Venus Express space probe fired its main engine at 09:17 CEST for a 50-minute burn, which brought it into orbit

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Comments by NASA's Andrew Dantzler Regarding Recent Dawn Mission Reviews »» Comments by NASA's Andrew Dantzler Regarding Recent Dawn Mission Reviews

[Tuesday, April 11, 2006] The following comments regarding the Dawn mission were made by Andrew Dantzler, Division Director of Planetary Sciences at the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters, this morning at a NASA workshop.

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NASA Solicitation: Exploration of the Moon and Beyond »» NASA Solicitation: Exploration of the Moon and Beyond

[Tuesday, April 11, 2006] NASA is developing a global space exploration strategy. A series of activities are planned in 2006 to gain a better understanding of the role that human and robotic exploration and development of a sustained human presence on the moon.

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Hubble Finds that Tenth Planet is Slightly Larger Than Pluto »» Hubble Finds that Tenth Planet is Slightly Larger Than Pluto

[Tuesday, April 11, 2006] For the first time, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has seen distinctly the "tenth planet," currently nicknamed "Xena," and has found that it is only slightly larger than Pluto.

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Trip to Mars Will Challenge Bones, Muscles: Former Astronaut calls for More NASA Research on Exercise in Space »» Trip to Mars Will Challenge Bones, Muscles: Former Astronaut calls for More NASA Research on Exercise in Space

[Wednesday, April 12, 2006] During a trip to Mars unchecked bone loss could make an astronaut's skeleton "the equivalent of a 100-year-old person," Former Astronaut Pawelczyk warned.

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NASA Joins Partners for Ocean Surface Topography Mission »» NASA Joins Partners for Ocean Surface Topography Mission

[Wednesday, April 12, 2006] NASA has signed an agreement with other U.S. and international agencies to launch the Ocean Surface Topography Mission in 2008.

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Building a hand-held lab-on-a-chip to simplify blood tests »» Building a hand-held lab-on-a-chip to simplify blood tests

[Wednesday, April 12, 2006] A cell phone-sized blood-count machine requiring less blood than a mosquito bite will make blood tests easier for many patients, from neonatal units to astronauts in space.

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New Satellite System Will Use GPS Signals To Track Hurricanes, Climate Change, Space Weather »» New Satellite System Will Use GPS Signals To Track Hurricanes, Climate Change, Space Weather

[Wednesday, April 12, 2006] A globe-spanning constellation of six satellites expected to improve weather forecasts, monitor climate change, and enhance space weather research will head into orbit on April 14.

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NASA Mars Rovers Head for New Sites After Studying Layers »» NASA Mars Rovers Head for New Sites After Studying Layers

[Wednesday, April 12, 2006] NASA's Mars rover Spirit has reached a safe site for the Martian winter, while its twin, Opportunity, is making fast progress toward a destination of its own.

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Astronomer Takes A New Spin On Vega; One Of Brightest Stars Is Rapidly Rotating »» Astronomer Takes A New Spin On Vega; One Of Brightest Stars Is Rapidly Rotating

[Wednesday, April 12, 2006] Vega, the second brightest star in the northern sky, is a 'standard' that has been used to calibrate astronomical observations. But problems with its use as a standard led to the suggestion that it is rapidly rotating.

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First Images from Venus Express »» First Images from Venus Express

[Thursday, April 13, 2006] ESA's Venus Express has returned the first-ever images of the Venusian south pole, from a distance of 206 452 kilometres, showing surprisingly clear structures and unexpected detail.

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NASA NEEMO 9 Mission Journal - Mission Day 6 - Saturday, April 8, 2006 »» NASA NEEMO 9 Mission Journal - Mission Day 6 - Saturday, April 8, 2006

[Thursday, April 13, 2006] To investigate the acceptable CG limits for future designs, the NASA EVA Physiology EPSP working in conjunction with the Crew and Thermal Systems engineers have developed a reconfigurable CG backpack that can be worn by divers on "sea walks".

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NASA Technology Spawns Weather, Climate Satellite Constellation »» NASA Technology Spawns Weather, Climate Satellite Constellation

[Thursday, April 13, 2006] A globe-spanning constellation of six weather and climate research satellites based on a novel application of NASA-developed technology is set to launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base Friday, April 14, at 5:10 p.m. PDT aboard a Minotaur rocket.

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Mars Orbiting Cameras Debut as NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Adjusts Orbit »» Mars Orbiting Cameras Debut as NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Adjusts Orbit

[Thursday, April 13, 2006] Images taken during the first tests confirm the performance capability of the cameras even though the test images were taken from nearly 10 times as far from the planet as the spacecraft will be once it finishes reshaping its orbit.

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Lunar rocks suggest meteorite shower »» Lunar rocks suggest meteorite shower

[Thursday, April 13, 2006] New measurements of lunar rocks returned by the Apollo missions have revealed that a number of the rocks show signs of melting suggesting that the moon - and its nearby neighbor Earth - were bombarded by a series of large meteorites at that time.

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Review of NASA Plans for the International Space Station »» Review of NASA Plans for the International Space Station

[Friday, April 14, 2006] "This report of the National Research Council's Space Station Panel reviews NASA plans for the completion of the International Space Station and its utilization in support of the human exploration of the solar system."

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Review of Goals and Plans for NASA's Space and Earth Sciences »» Review of Goals and Plans for NASA's Space and Earth Sciences

[Friday, April 14, 2006] "The main sources of gaps and potential missed opportunities are a shortage of scientific justification for their stated goals and an overly narrow interpretation of the presidential exploration vision by the NASA roadmap teams."

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Spirit Status 14 April 2006 »» Spirit Status 14 April 2006

[Saturday, April 15, 2006] Spirit is basking in the sun on a 10.8-degree, north-facing slope in Gusev Crater. After turning away from a previous heading toward "McCool Hill" last week, Spirit started driving toward "Low Ridge Haven" and arrived there over the weekend.

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Rhea Eclipses Another Moon »» Rhea Eclipses Another Moon

[Sunday, April 16, 2006] This image was taken on April 14, 2006 and received on Earth April 15, 2006. The camera was pointing toward Rhea at approximately 3,420,001 kilometers away.

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Swift Observes an Unusual Bang in the Far Universe »» Swift Observes an Unusual Bang in the Far Universe

[Sunday, April 16, 2006] Almost 40 years have passed since nuclear weapon warning satellites accidentally discovered bursts of high energy gamma rays from space. Thousands of gamma ray bursts have since been detected - the nature of these bursts is still not well understood.

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Overwintering in Antarctica: Winter's pull is strong for many »» Overwintering in Antarctica: Winter's pull is strong for many

[Sunday, April 16, 2006] Zoe Vida approaches winters in Antarctica with a very "Buddha" attitude: reminding herself to let go of the ego and become immersed in the experience of the long austral night.

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Comment on the recent Hubble Space Telescope size measurement of 2003UB313 »» Comment on the recent Hubble Space Telescope size measurement of 2003UB313

[Monday, April 17, 2006] "We were surprised by the smaller diameter implied by the new measurements and the implied high albedo. Although an albedo of 90% has never been observed for KBOs, it is not totally implausible, as Brown et al. suggest in their article."

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New and Improved Antimatter Spaceship for Mars Missions »» New and Improved Antimatter Spaceship for Mars Missions

[Monday, April 17, 2006] Most self-respecting starships in science fiction stories use antimatter as fuel for a good reason - it's the most potent fuel known. While tons of chemical fuel are needed to propel a human mission to Mars, just tens of milligrams of antimatter will do.

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NASA Announces Black Holes Found to be »» NASA Announces Black Holes Found to be "Green"

[Monday, April 17, 2006] Astronomers using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory will hold a media teleconference at 1 p.m. EDT Monday, April 24, to announce a fundamental discovery about black holes.

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NASA, Industry and Air Force Team Achieves Critical Milestone in Liquid Oxygen-Liquid Methane Engine Development Program »» NASA, Industry and Air Force Team Achieves Critical Milestone in Liquid Oxygen-Liquid Methane Engine Development Program

[Monday, April 17, 2006] NASA, industry and the U.S. Air Force have achieved a major milestone in the development of next-generation spaceflight technologies, successfully completing a 103-second hot-fire test of an engine fueled by liquid oxygen and liquid methane.

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The relation between accretion rate and jet power in X-ray luminous elliptical galaxies »» The relation between accretion rate and jet power in X-ray luminous elliptical galaxies

[Monday, April 17, 2006] "Our results show that black hole engines at the hearts of elliptical galaxies and groups feed back sufficient energy to stem cooling and star formation, leading to the observed exponential cut off at the bright end of the galaxy luminosity function."

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NASA Internal Memo: Constellation Program Weekly Update 16 April 2006 »» NASA Internal Memo: Constellation Program Weekly Update 16 April 2006

[Monday, April 17, 2006] "Imagine the Cx program is a 'house' we've set about building together, with the various rooms of the house representative of the separate elements of the architecture. Unfortunately, we don't have the funds to build the ENTIRE house all at once"

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NASA Announces Five Centennial Challenges Competitions Open for Registration »» NASA Announces Five Centennial Challenges Competitions Open for Registration

[Tuesday, April 18, 2006] NASA announced Tuesday the opening of team registration for five Centennial Challenges prize competitions with cash prizes totaling more than $1 million.

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NASA's Crew Launch Vehicle to Power Future Space Exploration »» NASA's Crew Launch Vehicle to Power Future Space Exploration

[Tuesday, April 18, 2006] NASA engineers are studying new flight technologies, test-firing engines and evolving the most successful hardware from past missions to develop the Crew Launch Vehicle that will carry a new generation of explorers to orbit and beyond.

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NASA Achieves Breakthrough in Black Hole Simulation »» NASA Achieves Breakthrough in Black Hole Simulation

[Tuesday, April 18, 2006] Scientists have reached a breakthrough in computer modeling that allows simulations of what gravitational waves from merging black holes look like. The three-dimensional simulations provide the foundation to explore the universe in an entirely new way.

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Sidelong at Saturn »» Sidelong at Saturn

[Wednesday, April 19, 2006] The Cassini spacecraft looks toward the Saturnian horizon as Dione and Janus glide past. A few craters are visible on Dione. Janus is slightly blurred due to its motion during the exposure.

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The Giant Magellan Telescope Group Grows »» The Giant Magellan Telescope Group Grows

[Wednesday, April 19, 2006] The Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT), the first extremely large new-generation telescope to begin production, has gained a new partner-the Australian National University (ANU). The announcement made today comes from the Giant Magellan Telescope consortium.

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Deadly Astronomical Event Not Likely To Happen In Our Galaxy, Study Finds »» Deadly Astronomical Event Not Likely To Happen In Our Galaxy, Study Finds

[Wednesday, April 19, 2006] Scientists have wondered whether a deadly astronomical event called a gamma ray burst could happen in a galaxy like ours, but astronomers at Ohio State University and their colleagues have determined that such an event would be nearly impossible.

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Magellanic Gemstones in the Southern Sky »» Magellanic Gemstones in the Southern Sky

[Wednesday, April 19, 2006] NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has captured the most detailed images to date of the open star clusters NGC 265 and NGC 290 in the Small Magellanic Cloud -- two sparkling sets of gemstones in the southern sky.

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XMM-Newton reveals a tumbling neutron star »» XMM-Newton reveals a tumbling neutron star

[Wednesday, April 19, 2006] Using data from XMM-Newton X-ray observatory, astrophysicists discovered that one spinning neutron star doesn't appear to be the stable rotator scientists would expect.

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NASA NEEMO-9 Crew Sends Greeting To NASA Bedrest Study Participant »» NASA NEEMO-9 Crew Sends Greeting To NASA Bedrest Study Participant

[Wednesday, April 19, 2006] "We were very interested to read about your sleep study adventure.  Seems like a pretty extreme environment that you've been living in for the past couple months as well."

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Galaxies are born inside dark matter clumps »» Galaxies are born inside dark matter clumps

[Thursday, April 20, 2006] Observations provide solid evidence that galaxies in the distant past trace this matter distribution very well and that these galaxies will eventually reside in extremely rich clusters of galaxies at the current epoch.

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ESA's ISO provides the first view of monstrous stars being born »» ESA's ISO provides the first view of monstrous stars being born

[Thursday, April 20, 2006] Scientists have secured their first look at the birth of monstrous stars that shine 100 000 times more brightly than the Sun, thanks to ESA's Infrared Space Observatory (ISO).

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Wealth of Unique NASA Data Helps Answer »» Wealth of Unique NASA Data Helps Answer "What on Earth?"

[Thursday, April 20, 2006] When Earth Day arrives on April 22, it will be just one more day that NASA science data archive centers are making available enormous quantities of important satellite data products that reveal many important facets of the Earth.

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NASA Administrator's Statement Regarding the Tragic Loss of Aviation Pioneer A. Scott Crossfield »» NASA Administrator's Statement Regarding the Tragic Loss of Aviation Pioneer A. Scott Crossfield

[Thursday, April 20, 2006] The following is a statement from NASA Administrator Michael Griffin on the tragic death of famed test pilot Albert Scott Crossfield.

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Synergy of Technologies Reveal Origin of Dust Around Nearby Star Beta Pictoris »» Synergy of Technologies Reveal Origin of Dust Around Nearby Star Beta Pictoris

[Friday, April 21, 2006] A team of astronomers have combined several technologies for the first time to obtain an infrared polarization image of the Beta Pictoris disk with better resolution and higher contrast than ever before.

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Mars Express's OMEGA uncovers possible sites for life »» Mars Express's OMEGA uncovers possible sites for life

[Friday, April 21, 2006] By mapping minerals on the surface of Mars using the Mars Express, scientists have discovered the three ages of Martian geological history – as reported in today's issue of Science - and found valuable clues as to where life might have developed.

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A Young Mars Most Likely to Support Life, New Mineral History Shows »» A Young Mars Most Likely to Support Life, New Mineral History Shows

[Friday, April 21, 2006] Mars started out relatively wet and temperate, underwent a major climate shift, and evolved into a cold, dry place strewn with acidic rock – less than ideal conditions for supporting life.

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NASA Announces Results from Exploration Strategy Workshop »» NASA Announces Results from Exploration Strategy Workshop

[Friday, April 21, 2006] Findings and recommendations from NASA's Exploration Strategy Workshop will be presented to media during a teleconference at 2 p.m. EDT on Friday, April 28.

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NASA Names Pete Worden To Be New Ames Research Center Director »» NASA Names Pete Worden To Be New Ames Research Center Director

[Friday, April 21, 2006] NASA Administrator Michael Griffin announced Friday that Simon P. "Pete" Worden will be the next director of NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffet Field, Calif.

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Daughters of Deep Impact »» Daughters of Deep Impact

[Saturday, April 22, 2006] The team that produced the spectacular Deep Impact mission is proposing two new missions that they think can help coalesce the cloud of cometary information into solid ideas about the nature of comets.

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NASA's Space Technology 5 (ST5) Status Report »» NASA's Space Technology 5 (ST5) Status Report

[Saturday, April 22, 2006] In less than a month after launch, the ST5 team has checked out the ST5 spacecraft and successfully activated all technologies. All three spacecraft are performing nominally, including attitude, thermal and power profiles.

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Discovery of Antarctic subglacial rivers may challenge excavation plans »» Discovery of Antarctic subglacial rivers may challenge excavation plans

[Sunday, April 23, 2006] Plans to drill deep beneath the frozen wastes of the Antarctic, to investigate subglacial lakes where ancient life is thought to exist, may have to be reviewed following a discovery by a British team.

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Scientists Polled on Solar System Exploration Program Priorities »» Scientists Polled on Solar System Exploration Program Priorities

[Monday, April 24, 2006] The Planetary Science Institute has conducted a survey of US-based planetary scientists to prioritize NASA solar system exploration programs in the context of flat or decreasing funding.

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GAO Report: Department of Defense Actions to Modify the Commercial Communications Satellite Services Procurement Process »» GAO Report: Department of Defense Actions to Modify the Commercial Communications Satellite Services Procurement Process

[Monday, April 24, 2006] DOD use of commercial satellite bandwidth has increased over the past few years, making the department the largest single customer of commercial satellite bandwidth.

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Progress Cargo Vehicle On Its Way to Space Station »» Progress Cargo Vehicle On Its Way to Space Station

[Monday, April 24, 2006] A shipment of supplies is on its way to the International Space Station. The ISS Progress 21 cargo ship was launched today from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

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NASA Chandra X-ray Observatory Finds Black Holes are »» NASA Chandra X-ray Observatory Finds Black Holes are "Green"

[Monday, April 24, 2006] Black holes are the most fuel efficient engines in the universe, according to a new study using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory.

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Happy Sweet Sixteen, Hubble Telescope! »» Happy Sweet Sixteen, Hubble Telescope!

[Monday, April 24, 2006] To celebrate the Hubble Space Telescope's 16 years of success, the two space agencies involved in the project, NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA), are releasing this image of the magnificent starburst galaxy, Messier 82 (M82).

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GLOBE at Night Reaches More Than 18,000 Participants on Six Continents »» GLOBE at Night Reaches More Than 18,000 Participants on Six Continents

[Monday, April 24, 2006] More than 18,000 citizen-scientists in 96 countries submitted 4,591 observations of the darkness of their local night skies during the 10-day GLOBE at Night event last month.

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ESA Mars Express Images: Nanedi Valles valley system on Mars »» ESA Mars Express Images: Nanedi Valles valley system on Mars

[Tuesday, April 25, 2006] These images, taken by the High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) on board ESA's Mars Express spacecraft, show the Nanedi Valles valley system, a steep-sided feature that may have been formed in part by free-flowing water.

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Statement by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin before the Senate Subcommittee on Science and Space »» Statement by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin before the Senate Subcommittee on Science and Space

[Tuesday, April 25, 2006] "Madam Chair and Members of the Subcommittee, thank you for this opportunity to appear today to discuss NASA's plans as represented in the President's FY 2007 budget request for NASA. "

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NASA Sees Hidden Structure of Neutron Star in Starquake »» NASA Sees Hidden Structure of Neutron Star in Starquake

[Wednesday, April 26, 2006] Scientists have estimated the depth of the crust on a neutron star, the densest object known in the universe. The crust is close to a mile deep and so tightly packed that a teaspoon of this material would weigh about 10 million tons on Earth.

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Mini satellites rocketing to space station »» Mini satellites rocketing to space station

[Thursday, April 27, 2006] A Russian rocket launched Monday, April 24, is carrying the first of three small, spherical satellites developed at MIT to the International Space Station -- a major step toward building space-based robotic telescopes and other systems.

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Pieces of NASA'S Next Mars Mission are Coming Together »» Pieces of NASA'S Next Mars Mission are Coming Together

[Thursday, April 27, 2006] NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander, the next mission to the surface of Mars, is beginning a new phase in preparation for a launch in August 2007.

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Progress Arrives at Space Station »» Progress Arrives at Space Station

[Thursday, April 27, 2006] New supplies arrived at the ISS Wednesday as an unpiloted Russian cargo spacecraft linked up to the Zvezda Service Module. The ISS Progress 21 is filled with 2.5 tons of food, fuel and personal items for the station's Expedition 13 crew.

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Galaxies Don Mask of Stars in New NASA Spitzer Image »» Galaxies Don Mask of Stars in New NASA Spitzer Image

[Thursday, April 27, 2006] A pair of dancing galaxies appears dressed for a cosmic masquerade in a new image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

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Hubble Provides Spectacular View of Ongoing Comet Breakup »» Hubble Provides Spectacular View of Ongoing Comet Breakup

[Thursday, April 27, 2006] The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope is providing astronomers with extraordinary views of comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 as it disintegrates before our eyes.

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NASA To Launch Next Shuttle Mission With Current Ice Frost Ramp Design »» NASA To Launch Next Shuttle Mission With Current Ice Frost Ramp Design

[Thursday, April 27, 2006] NASA has decided to fly the next shuttle mission (STS-121) with the ice frost ramps as currently designed. NASA Administrator Michael Griffin will announce this decision at a hastily arranged press conference Friday morning at NASA Headquarters.

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Remarks by NASA Deputy Administrator Shana Dale at the Space Exploration Strategy Workshop »» Remarks by NASA Deputy Administrator Shana Dale at the Space Exploration Strategy Workshop

[Friday, April 28, 2006] We are here today to consider how, with creativity and dedication, the world's space faring nations, working together, will advance scientific, economic and exploration progress on the moon, beginning not in 2018 when humans return to the lunar surface.

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NASA Launches Satellites for Weather, Climate, Air-Quality Studies »» NASA Launches Satellites for Weather, Climate, Air-Quality Studies

[Friday, April 28, 2006] Two NASA satellites were launched Friday from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., on missions to reveal the secrets of clouds and aerosols, tiny particles suspended in the air.

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NASA'S Exploration Workshop Kicks Off Strategy Development »» NASA'S Exploration Workshop Kicks Off Strategy Development

[Friday, April 28, 2006] Why are we going to the moon? What will we do when we get there? Approximately 200 participants from 13 countries grappled with these questions during NASA's Exploration Strategy Workshop, which concluded Friday.

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Epimetheus, Saturn's Rings, and Titan »» Epimetheus, Saturn's Rings, and Titan

[Friday, April 28, 2006] This image was taken on April 28, 2006 and received on Earth April 28, 2006. The camera was pointing toward Epimetheus at approximately 667,385 kilometers away.

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Some Thoughts Regarding Presidential Science Advisor John Marburger's Speech on Space Exploration and Utilization »» Some Thoughts Regarding Presidential Science Advisor John Marburger's Speech on Space Exploration and Utilization

[Saturday, April 29, 2006] "To me, as a long time space advocate, this speech is the most important statement on the development of the space frontier from the government since John F. Kennedy's fateful endorsement of the Apollo program."

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NASA Hubble Animation: The ongoing process of the destruction of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 »» NASA Hubble Animation: The ongoing process of the destruction of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3

[Sunday, April 30, 2006] Recent Hubble images have uncovered many more fragments than have been reported by ground-based observers. These observations provide an unprecedented opportunity to study the demise of a comet nucleus.

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New Horizons in Space: The First 100 Days »» New Horizons in Space: The First 100 Days

[Sunday, April 30, 2006] April 29 marks another milestone in New Horizons' historic journey to Pluto – the spacecraft's 100th day of flight.

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