March 2007 Top Story Archives



Professor Stephen Hawking to Experience Weightlessness Aboard Zero-Gravity Flight Out of Kennedy Space Center on April 26, 2007 »» Professor Stephen Hawking to Experience Weightlessness Aboard Zero-Gravity Flight Out of Kennedy Space Center on April 26, 2007

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] Zero Gravity Corporation (ZERO-G), announced today that Prof. Stephen Hawking, the world renowned physicist and expert on gravity, will fly weightless on The ZERO-G Experience on April 26, 2007.

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NASA's Hubble Space Telescope Observes Io During New Horizons Flyby of Jupiter »» NASA's Hubble Space Telescope Observes Io During New Horizons Flyby of Jupiter

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] NASA's Hubble Space Telescope is monitoring the volcanically active moon Io in support of the February 28 New Horizons spacecraft flyby of Jupiter. These images were taken with Hubble's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 on February 14, 2007.

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NASA's Hubble Space Telescope Follows Jupiter's Aurorae During New Horizons Flyby »» NASA's Hubble Space Telescope Follows Jupiter's Aurorae During New Horizons Flyby

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] Combined ultraviolet- and visible-light images of Jupiter from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope were taken from February 17-21 in support of the New Horizons flyby of Jupiter on February 28.

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NASA's Hubble Space Telescope Monitors Jupiter in Support of the New Horizons Flyby »» NASA's Hubble Space Telescope Monitors Jupiter in Support of the New Horizons Flyby

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] NASA's Hubble Space Telescope took this true-color view of Jupiter in support of the New Horizons Mission. The image was taken with Hubble's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 on February 17, 2007, using the planetary camera detector.

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NASA's Cassini Returns Never Before Seen Views of the Ringed Planet »» NASA's Cassini Returns Never Before Seen Views of the Ringed Planet

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] Over the last several months, the Cassini spacecraft has climbed to higher and higher inclinations, providing its cameras with glimpses of the planet and rings that have scientists gushing.

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NASA Lunar Lander Project Office Presentation »» NASA Lunar Lander Project Office Presentation

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] These charts contain an overview of the hardware being proposed for returing to the Moon plus some of the thinking behind how a lunar base might be established.

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NASA STEREO Panorama Previews Improved Solar Storm tracking »» NASA STEREO Panorama Previews Improved Solar Storm tracking

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] For the first time, scientists can track solar storms from the sun to Earth using the latest images from NASA's twin STEREO spacecraft.

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NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory Examines Jupiter During New Horizons Approach »» NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory Examines Jupiter During New Horizons Approach

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] In preparation for New Horizon's approach of Jupiter, Chandra took 5-hour exposures of Jupiter. In this composite image, data from those separate observations were combined, and then superimposed on the latest image of Jupiter from Hubble.

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ESA contribution to International Polar Year 2007-2008 »» ESA contribution to International Polar Year 2007-2008

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] Today marks the official start of International Polar Year 2007-2008, a worldwide science programme focused on the Arctic and Antarctic. ESA is contributing to this important initiative.

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NASA New Horizons Image: Tvashtar's Plume on Io »» NASA New Horizons Image: Tvashtar's Plume on Io

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] This dramatic image of Io was taken by the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) on New Horizons at 11:04 Universal Time on February 28, 2007, just about 5 hours after the spacecraft's closest approach to Jupiter.

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NASA New Horizons Mission: The PI's Perspective: Launch Complete »» NASA New Horizons Mission: The PI's Perspective: Launch Complete

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] The 8th mission to the 5th planet has reached its crescendo - Jupiter is in the rear view mirror! Just yesterday we passed closest approach, sealing the deal on our gravity assist and setting us up for our mid-July 2015 encounter with the Pluto system.

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NASA's robotic sub readies for dive into Earth's deepest sinkhole »» NASA's robotic sub readies for dive into Earth's deepest sinkhole

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] NASA has funded the Deep Phreatic Thermal Explorer (DEPTHX) mission to develop and test technologies that might someday be used to explore the oceans hidden under the icy crust of Europa, one of Jupiter's moons.

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Deep/Underwater Cave Environments: Comments by William Stone at the First NASA Risk and Exploration Symposium »» Deep/Underwater Cave Environments: Comments by William Stone at the First NASA Risk and Exploration Symposium

[Thursday, March 1, 2007] "I've come from a rather unusual background in that I came up through engineering school wanting to be an astronaut, but had the good fortune of discovering that there were remaining places to be explored here on Earth in the meantime."

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Experiments and Maintenance Continue Aboard the International Space Station »» Experiments and Maintenance Continue Aboard the International Space Station

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] Aboard the International Space Station, the Expedition 14 crew members continued their work this week with scientific experiments, station maintenance and additional clean up following the Feb. 22 Russian spacewalk.

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SMART-1 views the edge of Luna Incognita: Mars on the Moon? »» SMART-1 views the edge of Luna Incognita: Mars on the Moon?

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] SMART-1 has investigated lunar areas at the edge of Luna Incognita. This area near the lunar poles can be used for lunar science studies, or even to prepare for human bases on the Moon and on Mars.

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Total Lunar Eclipse March 2007 »» Total Lunar Eclipse March 2007

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] A total lunar eclipse will be visible from Europe and a large part of the world in the night of 3 March. The Moon will pass through the Earth's shadow, with the greatest eclipse occuring at around 23:21 UT. The totality will last for 73 minutes.

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Solar Eclipse, STEREO Style »» Solar Eclipse, STEREO Style

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] On Feb. 25, 2007 there was a transit of the Moon across the face of the Sun - but it could not be seen from Earth. This sight was visible only from the STEREO-B spacecraft in its orbit about the sun.

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How Long Does It Take to Rebuild Bone Lost During Space Flight? »» How Long Does It Take to Rebuild Bone Lost During Space Flight?

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] Bone loss during the course of a long transit to Mars and back could result in an increased risk of a bone fracture during activities on the Martian surface, or in the long term, back on Earth during the course of aging years after mission completion.

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Hubble sees »» Hubble sees "Comet Galaxy" being ripped apart by galaxy cluster

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, in collaboration with several other ground- and space-based telescopes, has captured a galaxy being ripped apart by a galaxy cluster's gravitational field and harsh environment.

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NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status Report 2 March 2007 »» NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status Report 2 March 2007

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] Preparations are underway at Launch Pad 39A to roll back the STS-117 Shuttle stack to the Vehicle Assembly building. Roll back is currently targeted for Sunday morning.

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Symmetry in Shadow »» Symmetry in Shadow

[Saturday, March 3, 2007] Magnificent blue and gold Saturn floats obliquely as one of its gravity-bound companions, Dione, hangs in the distance. The darkened rings seem to nearly touch their shadowy reverse images on the planet below.

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Las Vegas Welcomes Its Most Unique Attraction Yet: Weightless Flights By Zero Gravity Corporation »» Las Vegas Welcomes Its Most Unique Attraction Yet: Weightless Flights By Zero Gravity Corporation

[Monday, March 5, 2007] Zero Gravity Corporation, the first and only FAA-approved provider of commercial weightless flights, will launch regular flights from Las Vegas for the general public beginning April 21.

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NASA New Horizons Mission: The PI's Perspective - The Tip of the Iceberg »» NASA New Horizons Mission: The PI's Perspective - The Tip of the Iceberg

[Monday, March 5, 2007] The intensive phase of Jupiter encounter operations is winding down, but it's not yet over. In the first days of this week, we still have REX and LORRI calibrations and some imaging of Jupiter's satellites Elara and Himalia.

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Hubble Weaves Together Hundreds of Images to Create a Tapestry of 50,000 Evolving Galaxies »» Hubble Weaves Together Hundreds of Images to Create a Tapestry of 50,000 Evolving Galaxies

[Tuesday, March 6, 2007] Several hundred images taken with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have been woven together into a rich tapestry of at least 50,000 galaxies. The Hubble view is yielding new clues about the universe's youth, from its "pre-teen" years to young adulthood

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NASA Completes Key Review of Orion Spacecraft »» NASA Completes Key Review of Orion Spacecraft

[Wednesday, March 7, 2007] NASA has established a requirements baseline for the Orion crew exploration vehicle, bringing America's next human spacecraft a step closer to construction.

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NASA ARC Internal Memo: NASA ARC Selected as Site for International Space »» NASA ARC Internal Memo: NASA ARC Selected as Site for International Space

[Wednesday, March 7, 2007] Ames has been selected as the host site for the 2009 Summer Session Program of the International Space University. Congratulations to Ames, our partners, and all the people who worked hard on the proposal to make this unprecedented opportunity a reality.

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Full-spectrum study of small patch of sky yields portrait of maturing universe »» Full-spectrum study of small patch of sky yields portrait of maturing universe

[Wednesday, March 7, 2007] A massive project to generate an all-color map of the galaxies in a small area of sky, utilizing four satellite telescopes and four ground-based telescopes, is yielding new information about the universe.

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NASA Statement Regarding the Status of Astronaut Lisa Nowak »» NASA Statement Regarding the Status of Astronaut Lisa Nowak

[Wednesday, March 7, 2007] U.S. Navy Capt. Lisa Nowak's detail as a NASA astronaut has been terminated, effective March 8, by mutual agreement between NASA and the U.S. Navy.

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New Mexico Legislature: Declaring Pluto a Planet and March 13, 2007 as Pluto Planet Day »» New Mexico Legislature: Declaring Pluto a Planet and March 13, 2007 as Pluto Planet Day

[Thursday, March 8, 2007] "... as Pluto passes overhead through New Mexico's excellent night skies, it be declared a planet and that March 13, 2007 be declared "Pluto Planet Day" at the legislature."

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Prototype Space Probe Prepares To Explore Earth’s Deepest Sinkhole »» Prototype Space Probe Prepares To Explore Earth’s Deepest Sinkhole

[Thursday, March 8, 2007] Scientists return this week to the world’s deepest known sinkhole, Cenote Zacatón in Mexico, to resume tests of a NASA-funded robot called DEPTHX, designed to survey and explore for life in one of Earth’s most extreme regions and potentially in outer spac

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NASA to Announce Winner of Space Station Student Naming Contest »» NASA to Announce Winner of Space Station Student Naming Contest

[Thursday, March 8, 2007] NASA's newest module for the International Space Station is about to be given a new name. NASA's Kennedy Space Center hosts a media event on Thursday, March 15, at noon EDT to unveil the Node 2 module's new name.

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Gamma-Ray Burst Challenges Theory »» Gamma-Ray Burst Challenges Theory

[Thursday, March 8, 2007] In a series of landmark observations gathered over a period of four months, NASA's Swift satellite has challenged some of astronomers' fundamental ideas about gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), which are among the most extreme events in our universe.

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AEGIS survey reveals new principle governing galaxy formation and evolution »» AEGIS survey reveals new principle governing galaxy formation and evolution

[Thursday, March 8, 2007] Faced with the bewildering array of galaxies in the universe, from orderly spirals to chaotic mergers, it is hard to imagine a unifying principle that describes them all with mathematical precision. But that is just what astronomers have now discovered.

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United Launch Alliance Successfully Launches First USAF Atlas V »» United Launch Alliance Successfully Launches First USAF Atlas V

[Friday, March 9, 2007] A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket successfully launched six satellites at 10:10 p.m., EST, for the U.S. Air Force, marking the first use of the Atlas for an Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) program mission.

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NASA and USGS Produce Most Detailed Satellite Views of Antarctica »» NASA and USGS Produce Most Detailed Satellite Views of Antarctica

[Friday, March 9, 2007] Researchers from NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Golden, Colo., have woven together more than a thousand images from the Landsat 7 satellite to create the most detailed, high-resolution map ever produced of Antarctica.

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NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status 9 March 2007 »» NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status 9 March 2007

[Friday, March 9, 2007] On Sunday, Atlantis rolled from Launch Pad 39A to the Vehicle Assembly Building, where employees spent the week positioning platforms around the shuttle to allow for inspections and repairs to hail-damaged areas.

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NASA Space Station Status Report 9 March 2007 »» NASA Space Station Status Report 9 March 2007

[Friday, March 9, 2007] Science and setup for assembly highlighted the week on board the ISS, where the Expedition 14 crew members performed experiments related to human adaptation to space and made preparations for upcoming additions to the orbiting outpost

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APL-Built Microscopic Instrument Launched Aboard Air Force Academy Satellite »» APL-Built Microscopic Instrument Launched Aboard Air Force Academy Satellite

[Friday, March 9, 2007] Researchers from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, in conjunction with scientists from NASA and the U.S. Air Force Academy, have developed a tiny analyzer to study depletions of plasma in the ionosphere.

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SMART-1's bridge to the future exploration of the Moon »» SMART-1's bridge to the future exploration of the Moon

[Friday, March 9, 2007] SMART-1 data are helping to choose future landing sites for robotic and possible manned missions, and its instruments are upgraded and being flown again on the next generation of lunar satellites.

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NASA ARC NEO News (03/07/07) Planetary Defense Conference »» NASA ARC NEO News (03/07/07) Planetary Defense Conference

[Friday, March 9, 2007] The second triennial Planetary Defense Conference is being held this week. Following is a report of some highlights from the first two days (dealing with NEA surveys and population, characterization, and technologies for deflection).

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NASA ARC NEO News (03/09/07) Planetary Defense Conference Part 2 »» NASA ARC NEO News (03/09/07) Planetary Defense Conference Part 2

[Friday, March 9, 2007] Below is a report on the second half of the Planetary Defense Conference held this week in Washington DC. These sessions dealt with a range of societal and strategy issues, and in this summary I am reporting on only a few of the papers.

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NASA New Horizons Image: Jupiter's Rings »» NASA New Horizons Image: Jupiter's Rings

[Friday, March 9, 2007] The New Horizons Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) snapped this photo of Jupiter's ring system on February 24, 2007, from a distance of 7.1 million kilometers (4.4 million miles).

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NASA Near-Earth Object Survey and Deflection Analysis of Alternatives Report to Congress »» NASA Near-Earth Object Survey and Deflection Analysis of Alternatives Report to Congress

[Friday, March 9, 2007] Section 321 of the NASA Authorization Act of 2005, also known as the George E. Brown, Jr. Near-Earth Object Survey Act, directs the NASA Administrator to transmit an initial report to Congress not later than one year after the date of enactment.

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XMM-Newton finds the leader of the Magnificent Seven in a spin »» XMM-Newton finds the leader of the Magnificent Seven in a spin

[Saturday, March 10, 2007] A decade-long mystery has been solved using data from ESA's X-ray observatory XMM-Newton. The brightest member of the so-called 'magnificent seven' has been found to pulsate with a period of seven seconds.

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Light Gives Asteroids Spin »» Light Gives Asteroids Spin

[Saturday, March 10, 2007] Astronomers have observed an asteroid change the rate at which it spins for the first time, and shown that this is due to a theoretical effect predicted but never before seen.

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Successful dual launch for Arianespace - Skynet 5A and Insat 4B in orbit »» Successful dual launch for Arianespace - Skynet 5A and Insat 4B in orbit

[Sunday, March 11, 2007] On Sunday evening, March 11, Arianespace placed two satellites into geostationary transfer orbit: the military communications satellite Skynet 5A and the civil communications satellite Insat 4B.

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Cluster opens a new window on ‘magnetic reconnection’ in the near-Earth space »» Cluster opens a new window on ‘magnetic reconnection’ in the near-Earth space

[Monday, March 12, 2007] Plasma physicists have made an unprecedented measurement in their study of the Earth's magnetic field. Thanks to ESA's Cluster satellites they detected an electric field thought to be a key element in the process of 'magnetic reconnection'.

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NASA Hew Horizons: The PI's Presepctive: Downlink Initiated »» NASA Hew Horizons: The PI's Presepctive: Downlink Initiated

[Monday, March 12, 2007] New Horizons is about 0.15 astronomical units from Jupiter now, and already 5.5 AU from the Sun! Our final imaging and spectroscopy observations of Jupiter system targets wrapped up last week.

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New Panorama Reveals More Than 1000 Black Holes »» New Panorama Reveals More Than 1000 Black Holes

[Monday, March 12, 2007] Astronomers have captured an image of more than a thousand supermassive black holes. These results give a snapshot of a crucial period when these black holes are growing, and provide insight into the environments in which they occur.

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A Hot Start Might Explain Geysers on Enceladus »» A Hot Start Might Explain Geysers on Enceladus

[Monday, March 12, 2007] A hot start billions of years ago might have set into motion the forces that power geysers on Saturn's moon Enceladus. The scalding conditions are also favorable for the formation of simple hydrocarbon chains, basic building blocks of life.

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CryoSat-2 on the road to recovery »» CryoSat-2 on the road to recovery

[Monday, March 12, 2007] The decision to rebuild CryoSat and recover the mission includes just that goal. A year on and the mission is now well on the way to recovery, with a design that incorporates no less than 85 separate improvements.

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Antarctic Ice Sheet's Hidden Lakes Speed Ice Flow Into Ocean, May Disrupt Climate »» Antarctic Ice Sheet's Hidden Lakes Speed Ice Flow Into Ocean, May Disrupt Climate

[Monday, March 12, 2007] Just as explorers once searched the Africa's Nile River for clues to its behavior and ultimate source, modern-day scientists are searching Antarctica for its hidden lakes and waterways that can barely be detected at the surface of the ice sheet.

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NASA Mission Finds Link Between Big and Small Stellar Blasts »» NASA Mission Finds Link Between Big and Small Stellar Blasts

[Monday, March 12, 2007] Proof that certain double star systems can erupt in full-blown explosions and then continue to flare up with smaller bursts has been spotted by the ultraviolet eyes of NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer.

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Repairs To STS-117 External Tank Underway »» Repairs To STS-117 External Tank Underway

[Monday, March 12, 2007] On Sunday, Atlantis rolled from Launch Pad 39A to the Vehicle Assembly Building, where employees spent the week positioning platforms around the shuttle to allow for inspections and repairs to hail-damaged areas.

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INSAT-4B Placed in Intermediate Orbit »» INSAT-4B Placed in Intermediate Orbit

[Tuesday, March 13, 2007] The first critical orbit-raising manoeuvre on INSAT-4B was successfully conducted at 5:35 am this morning with the firing of the Liquid Apogee Motor on board for 93 minutes by commanding the satellite from Master Control Facility at Hassan in Karnataka.

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NASA New Horizons Image of Io: A Midnight Plume »» NASA New Horizons Image of Io: A Midnight Plume

[Tuesday, March 13, 2007] The Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) on New Horizons captured another dramatic picture of Jupiter's moon Io and its volcanic plumes, 19 hours after the spacecraft's closest approach to Jupiter on Feb. 28, 2007.

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Spacecraft to Study Clouds at Edge of Space Arrives at Vandenberg »» Spacecraft to Study Clouds at Edge of Space Arrives at Vandenberg

[Tuesday, March 13, 2007] NASA's Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere (AIM) spacecraft arrived Saturday at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., for a targeted April 25 launch aboard a Pegasus XL rocket.

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Prepared Statement by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin Before the House Appropriations Committee »» Prepared Statement by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin Before the House Appropriations Committee

[Tuesday, March 13, 2007] "I cannot sugarcoat the issue. The effect of the FY 2007 appropriation is to impose a six-month delay in our ability to bring online NASA's new human spaceflight systems, the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle and Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle."

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Stone Aerospace Announces Formation of a Company to Establish a Commercial Refueling Station in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) »» Stone Aerospace Announces Formation of a Company to Establish a Commercial Refueling Station in Low Earth Orbit (LEO)

[Tuesday, March 13, 2007] Bill Stone has announced his intent to be the first explorer to lead a team to the moon to explore for water and other fuels, and, if found in sufficient quantity, process the fuels on the moon, then transfer them to a low Earth orbit refueling station.

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Cassini Spacecraft Images Seas on Saturn's Moon Titan »» Cassini Spacecraft Images Seas on Saturn's Moon Titan

[Tuesday, March 13, 2007] Cassini has found evidence for seas, likely filled with liquid methane or ethane, on Titan. One such feature is larger than any of the Great Lakes of North America and is about the same size as several seas on Earth.

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SpaceX Posts New Details of Dragon Spacecraft »» SpaceX Posts New Details of Dragon Spacecraft

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] The Dragon spacecraft is a pressurized capsule used for Earth to LEO transport of pressurized cargo, unpressurized cargo, and/or crew members. Dragon will be utilized to fulfill our NASA COTS contract for demonstration of cargo re-supply of the ISS.

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NASA Science Update to Discuss New Phenomena on the Sun »» NASA Science Update to Discuss New Phenomena on the Sun

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] A NASA Science Update at 1 p.m. EDT Wednesday, March 21 will be held to discuss never-before-seen observations from an international mission studying the sun.

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NASA Studies How Airborne Particles Affect Climate Change »» NASA Studies How Airborne Particles Affect Climate Change

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] A recent NASA study links natural and human-made aerosol particles to how much Earth warms or cools. Earth's atmosphere acts as a protective shield that regulates how much solar energy the planet absorbs or deflects.

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Kuiper-belt Object Was Broken up by Massive Impact 4.5 Billion Years Ago, Study Shows »» Kuiper-belt Object Was Broken up by Massive Impact 4.5 Billion Years Ago, Study Shows

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] In this week's Nature, the original discoverer of the body, Mike Brown, announces with his colleagues that an entire family of bodies seems to have originated from a catastrophic collision involving 2003 EL61 about the time Earth was forming.

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NASA Mars Rover Churns Up Questions With Sulfur-Rich Soil »» NASA Mars Rover Churns Up Questions With Sulfur-Rich Soil

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] Some bright Martian soil containing lots of sulfur and a trace of water intrigues researchers who are studying information provided by NASA's Spirit rover.

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NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Movie: Flying Over Opportunity's Work Site »» NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Movie: Flying Over Opportunity's Work Site

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] Images of "Victoria Crater" in Mars' Meridiani Planum region, taken by Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, provided detailed, three-dimensional information that was used to create this animation of a hypothetical flyover.

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NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Movie: Flying Over Spirit's Work Site »» NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Movie: Flying Over Spirit's Work Site

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] Images of the "Columbia Hills" region inside Mars' Gusev Crater, taken by Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, provided detailed, three-dimensional information that was used to create this animation of a hypothetical flyover.

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New Horizons Mission to Begin Pluto Encounter April 12th, 2015 in Salute to Early Space Explorers »» New Horizons Mission to Begin Pluto Encounter April 12th, 2015 in Salute to Early Space Explorers

[Wednesday, March 14, 2007] Yuri's Night is proud to announce that New Horizons, the NASA spacecraft currently en route to the ninth planet, Pluto, and the Kuiper Belt, will begin its final encounter with the Pluto system on April 12, 2015.

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NASA Space Station Module in Perfect »» NASA Space Station Module in Perfect "Harmony" With New Name

[Thursday, March 15, 2007] Ever since it was designed for the International Space Station, it has been known as the Node 2 module. Now thanks to students from across the United States, Node 2 also will be known as "Harmony."

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Ice on Mars' South Pole Is Deep and Wide »» Ice on Mars' South Pole Is Deep and Wide

[Thursday, March 15, 2007] New measurements of Mars' south polar region indicate extensive frozen water. The polar region contains enough frozen water to cover the whole planet in a liquid layer approximately 36 feet deep.

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Global 'sunscreen' has likely thinned, report NASA scientists »» Global 'sunscreen' has likely thinned, report NASA scientists

[Friday, March 16, 2007] A new NASA study has found that an important counter-balance to the warming of our planet by greenhouse gases – sunlight blocked by dust, pollution and other aerosol particles – appears to have lost ground.

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Warming oceans threaten Antarctic glaciers »» Warming oceans threaten Antarctic glaciers

[Friday, March 16, 2007] Scientists have identified four Antarctic glaciers that pose a threat to future sea levels using satellite observations

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First ozone and nitrogen dioxide measurements from MetOp-A »» First ozone and nitrogen dioxide measurements from MetOp-A

[Friday, March 16, 2007] The Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment-2 (GOME-2) on board MetOp-A currently undergoing commissioning has delivered the first geophysical products for monitoring the Earth's ozone layer, and European and global air quality.

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NASA Seeks To Readjust Lunar Robotic Program - Again »» NASA Seeks To Readjust Lunar Robotic Program - Again

[Friday, March 16, 2007] According to NASA sources, the Lunar Precursor Robotic Program (LPRP) office at MSFC is either being totally shut down or dramatically reduced in size with lunar mission coordination moving back to NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC.

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NASA New Horizons Image of Jupiter: A Look from LEISA »» NASA New Horizons Image of Jupiter: A Look from LEISA

[Friday, March 16, 2007] On February 24, 2007, the LEISA (pronounced "Leesa") infrared spectral imager in the New Horizons Ralph instrument observed giant Jupiter in 250 narrow spectral channels.

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Mikulski Calls for Bipartisan Summit with White House on Future of Space Program »» Mikulski Calls for Bipartisan Summit with White House on Future of Space Program

[Friday, March 16, 2007] Senator Mikulski called for a bipartisan, bicameral space summit with the White House. She cited a similar meeting 17 years ago, with then President Bush and Vice President Quayle, which paved the way for the creation of the Mission to Planet Earth.

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SpaceX Falcon 1 Demoflight 2 Update 16 March 2007 »» SpaceX Falcon 1 Demoflight 2 Update 16 March 2007

[Sunday, March 18, 2007] At present, it appears that we are on track for a launch next week, possibly as soon as Monday [19 March]. We had a very successful static fire yesterday that proceeded smoothly with no aborts.

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Space Florida and Zero Gravity Corp. Partner to Launch Microgravity Education and Research Center »» Space Florida and Zero Gravity Corp. Partner to Launch Microgravity Education and Research Center

[Monday, March 19, 2007] Space Florida and Zero Gravity Corporation, announce the creation of the Florida Microgravity Education and Research Center, designed to facilitate Florida teacher and student space education and aerospace microgravity research expertise.

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Former Vice President Al Gore To Testify On Climate Change »» Former Vice President Al Gore To Testify On Climate Change

[Monday, March 19, 2007] The House Science & Technology Committee will hold a joint hearing along with the Energy & Commerce Committee to receive testimony from Former Vice President Al Gore and others on global climate change.

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SpaceX Scrubs Falcon 1 Launch For Today »» SpaceX Scrubs Falcon 1 Launch For Today

[Monday, March 19, 2007] SpaceX will attempt to launch a Falcom 1 today. All systems are now go for launch with T-0 at 4pm California time.

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NASA Finds Sun-Climate Connection in Old Nile Records »» NASA Finds Sun-Climate Connection in Old Nile Records

[Monday, March 19, 2007] NASA Researchers have analyzed Egyptian records of annual Nile water levels collected between 622 and 1470 A.D. at Rawdah Island in Cairo. These records were then compared to another well-documented human record from the same time period.

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NASA Edge Vodcasts: Embrace Your Inner Astronaut »» NASA Edge Vodcasts: Embrace Your Inner Astronaut

[Monday, March 19, 2007] NASA has begun to produce a series of downloadable videos - "Vodcasts" - aimed at a younger, hipper audience than is normally the case at NASA.

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What (do you think) is Humanity's Greatest Challenge? »» What (do you think) is Humanity's Greatest Challenge?

[Monday, March 19, 2007] The X PRIZE Foundation is always looking for new ideas around what people consider to be the largest, most challenging issues facing humankind today, and this is our "soap box" for you to be heard.

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Cassini Image: Hello Again, Jupiter! »» Cassini Image: Hello Again, Jupiter!

[Monday, March 19, 2007] The brick red, white and brown cloud bands of Jupiter are seen here from Saturn orbit. The Cassini spacecraft's powerful imaging cameras were specially designed to photograph nearby bodies (cosmically speaking) in the Saturn system.

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Independent Analysis of Alternatives To Divert a NEO on a Likely Collision Course With Earth »» Independent Analysis of Alternatives To Divert a NEO on a Likely Collision Course With Earth

[Tuesday, March 20, 2007] "What I attach is approximately a parallel analysis of the various alternatives for diverting a threatening NEO to that which NASA submitted to the Congress. "

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IceSAR campaign provides glimpse of future Sentinel-1 images over ice »» IceSAR campaign provides glimpse of future Sentinel-1 images over ice

[Tuesday, March 20, 2007] At the beginning of the International Polar Year, an airborne campaign is now underway and realising results in the extreme north of Europe in support of ESA's Sentinel-1 mission - which amongst other application areas will contribute to ice monitoring.

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First greenhouse gas animations produced using Envisat SCIAMACHY data »» First greenhouse gas animations produced using Envisat SCIAMACHY data

[Tuesday, March 20, 2007] Based on observations from the SCIAMACHY instrument aboard Envisat, scientists have produced the first movies showing the global distribution of the most important greenhouse gases – carbon dioxide and methane – that contribute to global warming.

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Falcon 1 Launched Into Space »» Falcon 1 Launched Into Space

[Tuesday, March 20, 2007] SpaceX launched its second Falcon 1 today. A few minutes into second stage operation telemetry was lost. Check this page for live updates.

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SpaceX Post-flight Comments Regarding Second Falcon 1 Launch »» SpaceX Post-flight Comments Regarding Second Falcon 1 Launch

[Tuesday, March 20, 2007] "The launch was not perfect, but certainly pretty good.  Given that the primary objectives were demonstrating responsive launch and gathering test data in advance of our first operational satellite launch later this year, the outcome was great."

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Cool Science: JPL Observes International Polar Year »» Cool Science: JPL Observes International Polar Year

[Wednesday, March 21, 2007] Vast, yet remote; frigid, yet teeming with life; stark and barren, yet serenely beautiful - these are just a few of the contradictions of Earth's polar regions. Within their frozen confines lie secrets.

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International Spacecraft Reveals Detailed Processes on the Sun »» International Spacecraft Reveals Detailed Processes on the Sun

[Wednesday, March 21, 2007] NASA released on Wednesday never-before-seen images that show the sun's magnetic field is much more turbulent and dynamic than previously known. The international spacecraft Hinode, formerly known as Solar B, took the images.

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International Astronautical Federation joins project to protect World Heritage sites »» International Astronautical Federation joins project to protect World Heritage sites

[Wednesday, March 21, 2007] The joint ESA/UNESCO Open Initiative to conserve natural and cultural World Heritage sites using Earth observation satellites gets additional backing as the IAF joins the growing number of space entities to pledge support to the project.

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Issues Du Jour - Mike Griffin »» Issues Du Jour - Mike Griffin

[Wednesday, March 21, 2007] "The theme for the conference this year is appropriate - looking back fifty years to Sputnik, and forward to Orion and Ares, the first elements of the Constellation program."

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NASA New Horizons: LORRI Takes an Even Closer Look at the Little Red Spot on Jupiter »» NASA New Horizons: LORRI Takes an Even Closer Look at the Little Red Spot on Jupiter

[Thursday, March 22, 2007] New Horizons has returned stunning new images of Jupiter's Little Red Spot, obtained as a 2-by-2 mosaic at 0312 UTC on February 27, 2007, from a distance of 3 million km (1.8 million miles). The image scale is 15 km (about 9 miles) per pixel.

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Spirit Loses, Re-Establishes Contact with Orbiter »» Spirit Loses, Re-Establishes Contact with Orbiter

[Thursday, March 22, 2007] Spirit is healthy but had to sit out a Martian day waiting to send data to Earth while the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter was in safe mode.

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NASA Assigns Crew for Shuttle Mission to Install Japanese Lab »» NASA Assigns Crew for Shuttle Mission to Install Japanese Lab

[Thursday, March 22, 2007] NASA has assigned the crew for shuttle mission STS-124, targeted for launch in February 2008. The flight will deliver the Pressurized Module and robotic arm of the Japanese Experiment Module, known as "Kibo" (hope), to the International Space Station.

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Mrs. Chippy joins NASA for astrobiology research in the desert! »» Mrs. Chippy joins NASA for astrobiology research in the desert!

[Friday, March 23, 2007] Remember me?  The little teddy bear that sent you e-mails from Antarctica back in December?  Well I've been invited to join the NASA Spacebound Mojave expedition that will be taking place beginning next week. 

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Worldwide testing and ISS traffic push ATV launch to autumn 2007 »» Worldwide testing and ISS traffic push ATV launch to autumn 2007

[Friday, March 23, 2007] Jules Verne, the first of five Automated Transfer Vehicles, stands on the brink of flight. Its hardware is 100 percent assembled and ready to fly. The inaugural mission, set for the second half of 2007, will follow an extensive three-year test campaign.

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NASA Spaceward Bound Scientists and Teachers Study the Mojave »» NASA Spaceward Bound Scientists and Teachers Study the Mojave

[Friday, March 23, 2007] NASA scientists and teachers will step back in time as they investigate the Mojave Desert to study the unique geologic formations and the supremely adapted microbes that call it home.

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NASA Studies Life's Limits in China's Extreme Deserts »» NASA Studies Life's Limits in China's Extreme Deserts

[Friday, March 23, 2007] Searching for clues to the potential for life on Mars, NASA scientists recently explored microbial communities in China's northwest region, and found evidence suggesting that conditions there may be similar to those in certain regions of Mars.

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Enceladus Geysers Mask the Length of Saturn's Day »» Enceladus Geysers Mask the Length of Saturn's Day

[Friday, March 23, 2007] Enceladus is weighing down Saturn's magnetic field so much that the field is rotating slower than the planet. This phenomenon makes it nearly impossible to measure the length of the Saturn day using techniques that work at the other giant planets.

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Fingerprinting the Milky Way »» Fingerprinting the Milky Way

[Friday, March 23, 2007] Using ESO's Very Large Telescope, an international team of astronomers has shown how to use the chemical composition of stars in clusters to shed light on the formation of our Milky Way.

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MIT models interplanetary supply chain »» MIT models interplanetary supply chain

[Friday, March 23, 2007] If you think shipping freight from Cincinnati to El Paso is challenging, imagine trying to deliver an oxygen generation unit from the Earth to a remote location on the moon.

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Gemini's Laser Vision Reveals Striking New Details in Orion Nebula »» Gemini's Laser Vision Reveals Striking New Details in Orion Nebula

[Saturday, March 24, 2007] An image released today by the Gemini Observatory brings into focus a new and remarkably detailed view of supersonic "bullets" of gas and the wakes created as they pierce through clouds of molecular hydrogen in the Orion Nebula.

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Berkeley Lab Detectors Gather Data on Earth's Auroras, Radiation Belts, and the Solar Wind »» Berkeley Lab Detectors Gather Data on Earth's Auroras, Radiation Belts, and the Solar Wind

[Saturday, March 24, 2007] Instruments known as solid-state telescopes carried aboard the recently launched THEMIS mission, have delivered their first data on how charged particles in the solar wind interact with Earth's magnetic field to shape the planet's magnetosphere.

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ESA's Medspiration project branches out to support biodiversity »» ESA's Medspiration project branches out to support biodiversity

[Saturday, March 24, 2007] Maps of the sea surface temperature around Galapagos Islands and Cocos Island in the Pacific Ocean are being produced daily and are available online in full resolution in near-real time as part of the Medspiration project.

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Second Young Engineers' Satellite (YES2) Test Programme begins »» Second Young Engineers' Satellite (YES2) Test Programme begins

[Sunday, March 25, 2007] With six months to go before launch, the Second Young Engineers' Satellite (YES2) has been moved into the test facilities at ESA's Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) in the Netherlands.

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Help These Students See Their Experiment Launched »» Help These Students See Their Experiment Launched

[Monday, March 26, 2007] "My students got accepted to have an experiment flown in a rocket at Spaceport America located in Upham, New Mexico. I'm trying to give the students the once in a lifetime opportunity to watch the launch and participate in the other activities."

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Haughton Mars Project Research Station Photo Report - Aerial Views »» Haughton Mars Project Research Station Photo Report - Aerial Views

[Monday, March 26, 2007] Aerial views have been released of the HMP Research Station in the high arctic on Devon Island, Nunavut, Canada located next to Haughton Crater.

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Cassini Images Bizarre Hexagon on Saturn »» Cassini Images Bizarre Hexagon on Saturn

[Tuesday, March 27, 2007] An odd, six-sided, honeycomb-shaped feature circling the entire north pole of Saturn has captured the interest of scientists with NASA's Cassini mission.

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The Purple Rose of Virgo - VLT Image of Bright Supernova in Spiral Galaxy »» The Purple Rose of Virgo - VLT Image of Bright Supernova in Spiral Galaxy

[Tuesday, March 27, 2007] Until now NGC 5584 was just one galaxy among many others, located to the West of the Virgo Cluster. Since 1 March, this purple cosmic rose also holds the brightest stellar explosion of the year, known as SN 2007af.

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Magnetic fields get reconnected in turbulent plasma too, Cluster reveals »» Magnetic fields get reconnected in turbulent plasma too, Cluster reveals

[Tuesday, March 27, 2007] Using measurements of the four ESA's Cluster satellites, a study published this week in Nature Physics shows pioneering experimental evidence of magnetic reconnection also in turbulent 'plasma' around Earth.

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Dust-busting, Lunar Style - Interview with Daniel Winterhalter »» Dust-busting, Lunar Style - Interview with Daniel Winterhalter

[Tuesday, March 27, 2007] As NASA makes plans to send humans back to the moon, this time to live and work there for extended periods of time, one of the most vexing problems they may be faced with is dust.

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Zero Gravity Corporation and Sharper Image to Sell Weightless Flights to the Public »» Zero Gravity Corporation and Sharper Image to Sell Weightless Flights to the Public

[Wednesday, March 28, 2007] Zero Gravity Corp. announced today that the Sharper Image will exclusively market and sell seats on ZERO-G's public flights - the only commercial opportunity on Earth for individuals to experience true "weightlessness" without going to space. 

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Boeing Announces Industry Team for Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle Upper Stage Production »» Boeing Announces Industry Team for Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle Upper Stage Production

[Wednesday, March 28, 2007] Boeing will lead a team of suppliers in pursuit of a contract for production of the upper stage for the Ares I crew launch vehicle, NASA's first new human-rated launch vehicle since the space shuttle.

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New Horizons Color Image of Erupting Volcano on Io »» New Horizons Color Image of Erupting Volcano on Io

[Wednesday, March 28, 2007] New Horizons captured this unique view of Jupiter's moon Io with its color camera - the Multispectral Visible Imaging Camera (MVIC) - at 00:25 UT on March 1, 2007, from a range of 2.3 million kilometers (1.4 million miles).

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Cassini Image: Unusual Hyperion »» Cassini Image: Unusual Hyperion

[Wednesday, March 28, 2007] Chaotically tumbling and seriously eroded by impacts, Hyperion is one of Saturn's more unusual satellites. Scientists believe the moon to be quite porous, with a great deal of its volume being empty space.

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Rhea, Orb of Ice »» Rhea, Orb of Ice

[Wednesday, March 28, 2007] A serene orb of ice is set against the gentle pastel clouds of giant Saturn. Rhea transits the face of the gas giant, whose darkened rings and their planet-hugging shadows appear near upper right.

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NASA Multi-Program Integrated Milestones Revised 27 March 2007 »» NASA Multi-Program Integrated Milestones Revised 27 March 2007

[Wednesday, March 28, 2007] This document contains an integrated snapshot of Space Shuttle, Soyuz, Progress, ATV, HTV, COTS, Ares 1, and Orion flights between 2007 and 2015 and key milestones for the development of Orion and Ares 1 systems and ISS completion/staffing.

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USGS Defines Roles for New Landsat 7 Satellite Mission »» USGS Defines Roles for New Landsat 7 Satellite Mission

[Thursday, March 29, 2007] With the Landsat Data Continuity Mission satellite expected to launch in 2011, NASA and USGS have announced their roles and responsibilities in mission development, subsystems procurement, and on-orbit operations.

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RocketPlane Kistler and NASA Sign Space Act Agreement To Assemble the COTS K-1 Space Transportation System in New Orleans »» RocketPlane Kistler and NASA Sign Space Act Agreement To Assemble the COTS K-1 Space Transportation System in New Orleans

[Thursday, March 29, 2007] Rocketplane Kistler, Inc. announced today that a Space Act Agreement has been established with the NASA MSFC to use NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, LA for the assembly of the K-1 Space Transportation System.

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NASA Telescope Finds Planets Thrive Around Stellar Twins »» NASA Telescope Finds Planets Thrive Around Stellar Twins

[Thursday, March 29, 2007] Astronomers using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope have observed that planetary systems – dusty disks of asteroids, comets and possibly planets – are at least as abundant in twin-star systems as they are in those, like our own, with only one star. 

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NASA Space Station Status Report 29 March 2007 »» NASA Space Station Status Report 29 March 2007

[Thursday, March 29, 2007] The Expedition 14 crew continued preparations for the April arrival of a new station crew by boarding their Soyuz TMA-9 craft and taking a 24-minute flight from one station docking port to another.

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NASA Astronaut to Run Boston Marathon in Space »» NASA Astronaut to Run Boston Marathon in Space

[Thursday, March 29, 2007] NASA astronaut Suni Williams will go faster than anyone has ever gone in the Boston Marathon. She will run the famed race in April as an official entrant from 210 miles above Earth aboard the International Space Station.

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Are We Alone? SETI Institute Science Radio »» Are We Alone? SETI Institute Science Radio

[Friday, March 30, 2007] Join us as we talk to Frank Drake and Jill Tarter about their efforts to find extraterrestrials. We'll also chat about the new Harvard optical SETI telescope, how we might converse with aliens, and debate whether SETI is worth the effort.

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On-orbit video from Orbital Express now available »» On-orbit video from Orbital Express now available

[Friday, March 30, 2007] The first video from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Orbital Express on-orbit demonstration is now available for viewing on-line.  The video depicts the global mated survey of the two spacecraft by the arm camera.

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Speech by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin: System Engineering and the Two Cultures of Engineering »» Speech by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin: System Engineering and the Two Cultures of Engineering

[Friday, March 30, 2007] "Today, I want to discuss the two cultures that we find embedded in the profession we call 'engineering', and how we must link them, through the discipline known as 'system engineering', a product of the American aerospace sector."

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Rosetta and New Horizons watch Jupiter in joint campaign »» Rosetta and New Horizons watch Jupiter in joint campaign

[Friday, March 30, 2007] Rosetta and New Horizons are working well together to observe Jupiter. A preliminary analysis of the data from Rosetta's Alice ultraviolet spectrometer indicates that the data quality is excellent and that good science is expected to follow.

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NASA New Horizons Image: Jovian Storm Spectra »» NASA New Horizons Image: Jovian Storm Spectra

[Friday, March 30, 2007] These images, taken with the LEISA infrared camera on the New Horizons Ralph instrument, show fine details in Jupiter's turbulent atmosphere using light that can only be seen using infrared sensors.

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ESA satellite images can help IPY expeditions in the Arctic Ocean »» ESA satellite images can help IPY expeditions in the Arctic Ocean

[Friday, March 30, 2007] International Polar Year expeditions attempting to navigate through the treacherous, ice-infested waters of the Arctic Ocean will be able to access the latest ESA Envisat satellite radar images of the ice conditions surrounding their vessel.

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Prototype for long wavelength array sees first light »» Prototype for long wavelength array sees first light

[Friday, March 30, 2007] Astronomers have produced the first images of the sky from a prototype of the Long Wavelength Array, a revolutionary new radio telescope to be constructed in southwestern New Mexico.

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NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status Report 30 March 2007 »» NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status Report 30 March 2007

[Saturday, March 31, 2007] In high bay No. 1 of the VAB, work is under way to assess and repair hail damage to the STS-117 external fuel tank, ET-124. Special scaffolding and access platforms have been erected to allow access to the tank and orbiter for inspections and repairs.

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