May 2007 Top Story Archives



Pluto-Bound New Horizons Provides New Look at Jupiter System »» Pluto-Bound New Horizons Provides New Look at Jupiter System

[Tuesday, May 1, 2007] NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has provided new data on the Jupiter system, stunning scientists with never-before-seen perspectives of the giant planet's atmosphere, rings, moons and magnetosphere.

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NASA to Announce Extraordinary Stellar Discovery »» NASA to Announce Extraordinary Stellar Discovery

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] At a NASA Science Update Monday, May 7, at 2 p.m. EDT, astronomers will announce new findings about a record-breaking stellar event discovered using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory.

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NASA New Horizons Provides New Views of Jupiter »» NASA New Horizons Provides New Views of Jupiter

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has provided new data on the Jupiter system -- stunning scientists with never-before-seen perspectives of the giant planet's atmosphere, rings, moons and magnetosphere.

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Astronomers Find Supermassive Planet »» Astronomers Find Supermassive Planet

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] Astronomers have announced that they have found the most massive known transiting extrasolar planet. The gas giant planet, called HAT-P-2b, contains more than eight times the mass of Jupiter.

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UV laser, diamond can generate pressures close to those in cores of supergiant planets »» UV laser, diamond can generate pressures close to those in cores of supergiant planets

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] Combining diamond anvils and powerful lasers, researchers have developed a technique that should be able to squeeze materials to pressures 100 - 1,000 times greater than possible today, reproducing conditions expected in the cores of supergiant planets.

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NEO News (05/02/07) White Paper from AIAA Planetary Defense Conference »» NEO News (05/02/07) White Paper from AIAA Planetary Defense Conference

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] Below are the main recommendations from the Planetary Defense Conference, held in March. 2007. The meeting was attended by 145 participants.

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NASA JSC Solicitation: Constellation Program Rescue and Recovery Methodologies »» NASA JSC Solicitation: Constellation Program Rescue and Recovery Methodologies

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] This notice is issued by the NASA/JSC to post a Request for Information (RFI) via the internet and to solicit information from Industry regarding the Constellation Program's Rescue and Recovery Methodologies.

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Sharp Views Show Ground Ice on Mars is Patchy and Variable »» Sharp Views Show Ground Ice on Mars is Patchy and Variable

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] Using observations by NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter, scientists have discovered that water ice lies at variable depths over small-scale patches on Mars.

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Live SpaceRef/NASA Watch Interview with ISS Crew »» Live SpaceRef/NASA Watch Interview with ISS Crew

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] Editor's note: On Thursday, 3 May, between 11:15 and 11:25 am EDT I will be conducting a live interview with the crew of the International Space Station. The interview will air live on NASA TV

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Hubble finds multiple stellar »» Hubble finds multiple stellar "baby booms" in a globular cluster

[Wednesday, May 2, 2007] Analysis of Hubble observations of the massive globular cluster NGC 2808 provides evidence that it has three generations of stars that formed early in the cluster's life.

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Canadian Mission Concept to Mysterious Mars moon Phobos to Feature Unique Rock-Dock Maneuver »» Canadian Mission Concept to Mysterious Mars moon Phobos to Feature Unique Rock-Dock Maneuver

[Thursday, May 3, 2007] The science team has tentatively selected a feature on the surface of Phobos as the landing site. Known as the “Phobos Monolith”, it is a building-sized object. The mission intends to use a new maneuver coined rock-dock, to dock with Phobos.

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Message From the NASA Administrator - The Passing of Wally Schirra »» Message From the NASA Administrator - The Passing of Wally Schirra

[Thursday, May 3, 2007] "Today is a sad day for NASA and our country, as we mourn the passing yesterday in California of astronaut Walter "Wally" Schirra."

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NASA's Centennial Challenge to Excavate Moon Dirt Set for May 12 »» NASA's Centennial Challenge to Excavate Moon Dirt Set for May 12

[Friday, May 4, 2007] On Saturday, May 12, teams from around the nation will compete for a total of $250,000 from NASA for an autonomously operating system to excavate simulated "lunar regolith," or the moon's soil.

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NASA's Mars Rover Finds Evidence of Ancient Volcanic Explosion »» NASA's Mars Rover Finds Evidence of Ancient Volcanic Explosion

[Friday, May 4, 2007] NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit has discovered evidence of an ancient volcanic explosion at "Home Plate," a plateau of layered bedrock approximately 2 meters (6 feet) high within the "Inner Basin" of Columbia Hills.

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COROT discovers its first exoplanet, and catches scientists by surprise »» COROT discovers its first exoplanet, and catches scientists by surprise

[Friday, May 4, 2007] COROT has provided its first image of a giant planet orbiting another star and the first bit of 'seismic' information on a far away, Sun-like star- with unexpected accuracy. 

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NASA Antenna Cuts Mercury to Core, Solves 30 Year Mystery »» NASA Antenna Cuts Mercury to Core, Solves 30 Year Mystery

[Friday, May 4, 2007] Researchers working with high-precision planetary radars, including the Goldstone Solar System Radar of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., have discovered strong evidence that the planet Mercury has a molten core.

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Has SOHO ended a 30-year quest for solar ripples?  »» Has SOHO ended a 30-year quest for solar ripples? 

[Friday, May 4, 2007] The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) may have glimpsed long-sought oscillations on the Sun's surface. The data will reveal details about the very core of our central star and it contains clues as to how the Sun formed, 4.6 billion years ago.

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NASA Awards Heat Shield Material Contracts for Orion Spacecraft »» NASA Awards Heat Shield Material Contracts for Orion Spacecraft

[Friday, May 4, 2007] NASA has selected The Boeing Company, Huntington Beach, Calif., and Textron Systems, Wilmington, Mass., to develop alternate heat shield materials for the Orion crew exploration spacecraft.

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Ariane 5 - second launch of six in 2007 »» Ariane 5 - second launch of six in 2007

[Saturday, May 5, 2007] On 4 May 2007, an Ariane 5 ECA launcher lifted off from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana on its mission to place two satellites into geostationary transfer orbits.

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Complete NASA Report »» Complete NASA Report "2006 Near Earth Object Survey and Deflection Study" Online at B612 Foundation Website

[Saturday, May 5, 2007] "NASA is an important player in the chain of responsibility for enabling the prevention of these infrequent devastating disasters. For this reason we believe that all information on this subject should be open to all for review."

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Track ESA spacecraft online »» Track ESA spacecraft online

[Sunday, May 6, 2007] Ever wondered if Envisat, Integral or the ISS was overhead? Now you can view the location of ESA's Earth-orbiting spacecraft and other ESA-related missions in real-time via our new tracking site.

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NASA Space Simulation and Training Project: NEEMO 12 »» NASA Space Simulation and Training Project: NEEMO 12

[Sunday, May 6, 2007] May 7-18, 2007, the 12th mission of NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations (NEEMO) will take place in the Aquarius habitat off the coast of Key Largo, Florida.

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Plan B for Outer Space »» Plan B for Outer Space

[Monday, May 7, 2007] "I estimate that the Vision will be abandoned in 1 to 7 years. Even the best scenarios play out like the history of the Space Station: schedule slips, busted budgets (both meanings), pork infestation, and still not able to complete its mission."

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Chandra Sees Brightest Supernova Ever »» Chandra Sees Brightest Supernova Ever

[Monday, May 7, 2007] The brightest stellar explosion ever recorded may be a long-sought new type of supernova, according to observations by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and ground-based optical telescopes.

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Venus Express' infrared camera goes filming »» Venus Express' infrared camera goes filming

[Monday, May 7, 2007] An exciting new series of videos from ESA's Venus Express has been capturing atmospheric details of day and night areas simultaneously, at different altitudes.

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NASA to Compete with Small Businesses »» NASA to Compete with Small Businesses

[Monday, May 7, 2007] A bill to be introduced by Rep. Ken Calvert will have NASA enter the advertising business. Congressman Calvert recently announced that he wants to make "NASA space assets available for commercial advertising and marketing opportunities." 

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Building a Better NASA Workforce: Meeting the Workforce Needs for the National Vision for Space Exploration »» Building a Better NASA Workforce: Meeting the Workforce Needs for the National Vision for Space Exploration

[Monday, May 7, 2007] "Given that the Vision for Space Exploration may take tens of years to implement, a significant issue is whether NASA and the United States will have the workforce needed to achieve that vision."

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Latest Group of NASA Solar System Ambassadors Ready for Liftoff »» Latest Group of NASA Solar System Ambassadors Ready for Liftoff

[Tuesday, May 8, 2007] The newest bunch of space enthusiasts in NASA's Solar System Ambassadors Program is hard at work, planning events to educate various communities on their one true passion: space.

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Brightest supernova ever may be long-sought pair-instability supernova »» Brightest supernova ever may be long-sought pair-instability supernova

[Tuesday, May 8, 2007] An exploding star first observed last September is the largest and most luminous supernova ever seen and may be the first example of a type of massive exploding star rare today but probably common in the very early universe. 

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X-rays provide a new way to investigate exploding stars »» X-rays provide a new way to investigate exploding stars

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] ESA's X-ray observatory XMM-Newton has revealed a new class of exploding stars – where the X-ray emission 'lives fast and dies young'. This gives astronomers a valuable new constraint to help them model and understand stellar explosions.

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NASA Successfully Completes Engine Hardware Tests For Ares V »» NASA Successfully Completes Engine Hardware Tests For Ares V

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] NASA has successfully completed testing of subscale main injector hardware, an early step in development of the RS-68 engine that will power the core stage of NASA's Ares V.

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Progress to Launch to International Space Station »» Progress to Launch to International Space Station

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] A new Progress freighter is scheduled to launch to the International Space Station at 11:25 p.m. EDT Friday, May 11, with more than 2.5 tons of fuel, air, water and other supplies and equipment aboard.

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NASA'S Next Mars Spacecraft Crosses the Mississippi »» NASA'S Next Mars Spacecraft Crosses the Mississippi

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] A U.S. Air Force C-17 cargo aircraft carried NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander spacecraft Monday, May 7, from Colorado to Florida, where Phoenix will start a much longer trip in August.

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Cassini Finds that Storms Power Saturn's Jet Streams »» Cassini Finds that Storms Power Saturn's Jet Streams

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] New Cassini research suggests eddies, or giant rotating storms, are the "engine" powering Saturn's jet stream winds.

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First Map of an Extrasolar Planet »» First Map of an Extrasolar Planet

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] For the first time, astronomers have created a rough map of a planet orbiting a distant sun-like star, employing a technique that may one day enable mapping of Earth-like worlds.

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NASA Selects New Members of NASA Astrobiology Institute »» NASA Selects New Members of NASA Astrobiology Institute

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] NASA is awarding five-year grants to four research teams that will become new members of the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI).

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NASA study suggests extreme summer warming in the future »» NASA study suggests extreme summer warming in the future

[Wednesday, May 9, 2007] A new study by NASA scientists suggests that greenhouse-gas warming may raise average summer temperatures in the eastern United States nearly 10 degrees Fahrenheit by the 2080s.

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A Galactic Fossil - Star is Found to be 13.2 Billion Years Old »» A Galactic Fossil - Star is Found to be 13.2 Billion Years Old

[Thursday, May 10, 2007] Using ESO's VLT, astronomers recently  measured the age of a star located in our Galaxy. The star is 13.2 billion years old, not very far from the  13.7 billion years age of the Universe. The star, HE 1523-0901, was  clearly born at the dawn of time. 

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Our Celestial Bodies, Ourselves - SETI Institute Science Radio »» Our Celestial Bodies, Ourselves - SETI Institute Science Radio

[Friday, May 11, 2007] It's a planet Goldilocks would relish. Scientists are calling Gliese 581C "just right" for supporting life. The newly-discovered planet is not too hot, not too cold ... which means it could harbor liquid water.

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Progress M-60 Transport Vehicle Launched To International Space Station »» Progress M-60 Transport Vehicle Launched To International Space Station

[Saturday, May 12, 2007] A new cargo freighter launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to the International Space Station at 10:25 p.m. CDT Friday with more than 2.5 tons of fuel, air, water and other supplies and equipment aboard.

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NASA NEEMO 12 Mission Journal Thursday, May 10, 2007 »» NASA NEEMO 12 Mission Journal Thursday, May 10, 2007

[Saturday, May 12, 2007] "Jose’s educational outreach was exciting. Six schools, including one from the UK, participated. The students asked good questions about our experiments, remote robotic surgery experiments and the plant germination experiment."

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NASA New Horizons Mission: PI's Perspective: Continuing Our Jovian Journey »» NASA New Horizons Mission: PI's Perspective: Continuing Our Jovian Journey

[Saturday, May 12, 2007] "This will be a short update, but I didn't want you to think we've folded our tent at Jupiter yet. The image illustration at right is amazing, isn't it? If you haven't been to Jupiter yourself, I think now you can say you almost have been!"

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NASA on Display: Taking Space Exploration To The People »» NASA on Display: Taking Space Exploration To The People

[Sunday, May 13, 2007] "I went down to the Mall in downtown Washington, DC on Friday to see the exhibits NASA had set up ... if NASA wants people to know what they are doing they need to go out and engage them one on one - not just stand there like movie ushers."

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NASA Welcomes 25 New NASA Explorer School Teams »» NASA Welcomes 25 New NASA Explorer School Teams

[Monday, May 14, 2007] NASA Explorer Schools provide unique opportunities designed to engage and educate the future scientists who may someday help advance U.S. scientific interests through space exploration.

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Rep. Lampson Concerned About Survival of Vital Hurricane Tracking Satellite »» Rep. Lampson Concerned About Survival of Vital Hurricane Tracking Satellite

[Monday, May 14, 2007] QuikSCAT is currently two years beyond its five-year design lifetime and there is no near-term plan to replace the satellite's severe weather prediction capabilities.

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Industry Leaders Call on Congress to Boost NASA Budget »» Industry Leaders Call on Congress to Boost NASA Budget

[Monday, May 14, 2007] An unprecedented coalition of nearly two dozen U.S. aerospace corporations told the Congress on Friday, May 11, that NASA is in urgent need of a boost to its fiscal year 2008 budget or America's space leadership could be lost for a generation.

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NASA Completes Constellation Ground Operations Review »» NASA Completes Constellation Ground Operations Review

[Monday, May 14, 2007] NASA has established a requirements baseline for ground systems to be developed in support of the Constellation Program. The systems requirements review was conducted at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on May 5.

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Trip Report: Miss Bushman's Class Has A NASA Rocket Adventure in New Mexico »» Trip Report: Miss Bushman's Class Has A NASA Rocket Adventure in New Mexico

[Monday, May 14, 2007] "My heart is full of appreciation to all the people who helped make the trip to New Mexico possible. I want to say thank you, thank you for making a difference in my life and my students' lives."

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Progress Cargo Freighter Docks With ISS »» Progress Cargo Freighter Docks With ISS

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] A spacecraft automatically docked to the International Space Station early Tuesday, delivering 2.5 tons of food, fuel and supplies for the residents on board.

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DARPA's Orbital Express Encounters Serious Sensor Flight Computer Anomaly »» DARPA's Orbital Express Encounters Serious Sensor Flight Computer Anomaly

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] During Scenario 3-1 execution on the evening of May 11, Orbital Express encountered a serious sensor flight computer anomaly on the ASTRO while stationkeeping at 10 meters separation distance from the NextSat.

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An Interview With the Expedition 15 Crew Aboard The International Space Station »» An Interview With the Expedition 15 Crew Aboard The International Space Station

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] "On May 3rd I had a unique chance to speak with the Expedition 15 crew aboard the International Space Station. I conducted this interview from NASA Ames Research Center in California."

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NASA's Shuttle Atlantis Rolls Back Out to Launch Pad »» NASA's Shuttle Atlantis Rolls Back Out to Launch Pad

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] Space shuttle Atlantis is back at its launch pad at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, Fla. Teams are preparing Atlantis for its mission, STS-117, to the International Space Station. Launch is targeted for June 8.

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Ancient Microbes Living in Frozen Antarctic Soil May Be Model for Life on Mars, According to the Journal Astrobiology »» Ancient Microbes Living in Frozen Antarctic Soil May Be Model for Life on Mars, According to the Journal Astrobiology

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] Researchers exploring the possibility of finding life forms on Mars can look to diverse populations of microorganisms found to be living in a similar environment underneath the Antarctic polar ice cap, as described in the April issue of "Astrobiology".

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Astronomers Find Ring of Dark Matter With Hubble Space Telescope »» Astronomers Find Ring of Dark Matter With Hubble Space Telescope

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have discovered a ghostly ring of dark matter that formed long ago during a titanic collision between two galaxy clusters.

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NASA New Horizons Image: Io's Tvashtar Volcano Eruption - in Motion »» NASA New Horizons Image: Io's Tvashtar Volcano Eruption - in Motion

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] This five-frame sequence captures the giant plume from Io's Tvashtar volcano. This first-ever "movie" of an Io plume clearly shows motion in the cloud of volcanic debris, which extends 330 kilometers (200 miles) above the moon's surface.

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NASA Finds Vast Regions of West Antarctica Melted in Recent Past »» NASA Finds Vast Regions of West Antarctica Melted in Recent Past

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] A team of NASA and university scientists has found clear evidence that extensive areas of snow melted in west Antarctica in January 2005 in response to warm temperatures.

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NASA-funded Robotic Sub Makes Final Dive To Reach Bottom of Earth's Deepest Sinkhole »» NASA-funded Robotic Sub Makes Final Dive To Reach Bottom of Earth's Deepest Sinkhole

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] Scientists this week begin the final leg of a five-year, NASA-funded mission to reach the bottom of Cenote Zacatón in Mexico, the world's deepest known sinkhole.

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NASA GSFC: Naval Academy-Built Satellite to Carry NASA Experiments »» NASA GSFC: Naval Academy-Built Satellite to Carry NASA Experiments

[Tuesday, May 15, 2007] A partnership between NASA and the U.S. Naval Academy is offering students real-world experience. MidSTAR-2 will carry four experiments into space in 2011 to look at different parts of Earth's atmosphere, gamma rays and solar winds.

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Cracks on Enceladus Open and Close under Saturn's Pull »» Cracks on Enceladus Open and Close under Saturn's Pull

[Wednesday, May 16, 2007] Cracks in the icy surface of Saturn's moon Enceladus open and close daily under the pull of Saturn's gravity, according to new calculations by NASA-sponsored researchers.

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An Interview With the NASA NEEMO 12 Crew and Their Mascot »» An Interview With the NASA NEEMO 12 Crew and Their Mascot "Flat Gorby"

[Thursday, May 17, 2007] On Wednesday I did a short (5 minute) live interview with the NEEMO 12 crew from their Aquarius underwater habitat.

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New NASA Exploration Imagery Online »» New NASA Exploration Imagery Online

[Thursday, May 17, 2007] NASA recently posted a number of new artist's depictions of Orion and Ares hardware online.

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Subcommittee Focuses on Ensuring the Health and Vitality of NASA's Current and Future Workforce »» Subcommittee Focuses on Ensuring the Health and Vitality of NASA's Current and Future Workforce

[Friday, May 18, 2007] The House Committee on Science and Technology's Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics today examined a range of NASA workforce issues identified by the recently released reports of two independent review panels.

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NASA Scientists Pioneer Technique for Weighing Black Holes »» NASA Scientists Pioneer Technique for Weighing Black Holes

[Friday, May 18, 2007] Two astrophysicists at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., Nikolai Shaposhnikov and Lev Titarchuk, have successfully tested a new method for determining the masses of black holes.

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NEEMO 12 Mission Journal May 17, 2007 »» NEEMO 12 Mission Journal May 17, 2007

[Friday, May 18, 2007] This morning as we awoke, we knew that today would be a bittersweet day. It would be our last full day in the habitat.A highlight of our mission today was a "ship to ship" call from the Aquarius Habitat up to the International Space Station!

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Baby Stars Hatching in Orion's Head »» Baby Stars Hatching in Orion's Head

[Friday, May 18, 2007] A new image from Spitzer Space Telescope shows infant stars "hatching" in the head of Orion. Astronomers suspect that shockwaves from a 3-million-year-old explosion of a massive star may have initiated this newfound birth.

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International cooperation boosts EarthCARE »» International cooperation boosts EarthCARE

[Saturday, May 19, 2007] Engineers recently met to discuss preparations for a mission that is being implemented with the cooperation of Japan to address the need for a better understanding of how the interactions between clouds, aerosols and solar radiation regulate climate.

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NASA's Phoenix to Seek Organics in Mars' Ice to Unravel Red Planet's Mysteries »» NASA's Phoenix to Seek Organics in Mars' Ice to Unravel Red Planet's Mysteries

[Saturday, May 19, 2007] A spacecraft called Phoenix is destined to land on Mars in 2008, seeking to unravel some of the mysteries of the red planet.

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Cassini spacecraft reveals evidence of tholin formation at high altitudes in Titan's atmosphere »» Cassini spacecraft reveals evidence of tholin formation at high altitudes in Titan's atmosphere

[Saturday, May 19, 2007] New information gathered by three particle spectrometers aboard the Cassini spacecraft shows tholin formation happens in Titan's atmosphere at altitudes greater than 1,000 km. The results also show tholins form differently than previously thought.

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ESA presents the sharpest ever satellite map of Earth »» ESA presents the sharpest ever satellite map of Earth

[Saturday, May 19, 2007] The most detailed portraits ever of the Earth's land surface have been created with ESA's Envisat environmental satellite. The portraits are the first products produced as part of the ESA-initiated GlobCover project and are available online.

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Spirit Unearths Surprise Evidence of Wetter Past »» Spirit Unearths Surprise Evidence of Wetter Past

[Monday, May 21, 2007] Soil analyzed by Spirit is so rich in silica that it may provide strong evidence that ancient Mars was much wetter than it is now. The processes that could have produced such a concentrated deposit of silica require the presence of water.

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LSU to Host International Symposium on Risk and Exploration »» LSU to Host International Symposium on Risk and Exploration

[Tuesday, May 22, 2007] Louisiana State University announced today that it will serve as the host for a symposium Titled "Risk and Exploration: Earth As A Classroom" devoted to examining how risk factors into the exploration of - and beyond - our home planet.

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NASA Satellites Bolster Research on Barren Mid-Ocean Regions »» NASA Satellites Bolster Research on Barren Mid-Ocean Regions

[Tuesday, May 22, 2007] NASA satellite data have helped scientists solve a decades-old puzzle about how vast blooms of microscopic plants can form in the middle of otherwise barren mid-ocean regions.

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Cassini 'Cat Scan' Maps Clumps In Saturn's Rings »» Cassini 'Cat Scan' Maps Clumps In Saturn's Rings

[Tuesday, May 22, 2007] Saturn's largest and most densely packed ring is composed of tightly packed clumps of particles separated by nearly empty gaps, according to new findings from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. 

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NASA, AOL and Mad Science Choose Pennant Design Challenge Winner »» NASA, AOL and Mad Science Choose Pennant Design Challenge Winner

[Wednesday, May 23, 2007] NASA, AOL's kids service, KOL, and Mad Science have announced that Tapasya Das of Mount Laurel, N.J., is the winner of the NASA Space Pennant Design Challenge. The winning pennant will fly on the STS-118 mission, targeted to launch this August.

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Gamma-Ray Bursts Active Longer Than Thought »» Gamma-Ray Bursts Active Longer Than Thought

[Wednesday, May 23, 2007] Using NASA's Swift satellite, astronomers have discovered that energetic flares seen after gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are not just hiccups, they appear to be a continuation of the burst itself.

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Ground - based observatories join forces with Venus Express »» Ground - based observatories join forces with Venus Express

[Wednesday, May 23, 2007] Data from Venus Express, which has been revealing new and crucial details about our closest planetary neighbour, will now be augmented by synoptic data from a coordinated ground-based observation campaign.

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Texas Astronomers Discover Mult-Planet System Around Unexpected Star; May Alter Planet-Formation Theories »» Texas Astronomers Discover Mult-Planet System Around Unexpected Star; May Alter Planet-Formation Theories

[Wednesday, May 23, 2007] Astronomers have discovered a system of two Jupiter-like planets orbiting a star whose composition might seem to rule out planet formation. This NASA-funded study has implications for theories of planet formation.

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Blue Expanse »» Blue Expanse

[Wednesday, May 23, 2007] The Cassini spacecraft surveys Saturn's outstretched ring system in the infrared from a vantage point high above the planet's northern latitudes. Nearly the full expanse of the main rings is visible here.

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Coasts and Drowned Mountains on Titan »» Coasts and Drowned Mountains on Titan

[Wednesday, May 23, 2007] On May 12, 2007, Cassini completed its 31st flyby of Saturn's moon Titan, which the team calls T30. The radar instrument obtained this image showing the coastline and numerous island groups of a portion of a large sea.

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Father of 'Origin of Life' Chemistry at UC San Diego Dies »» Father of 'Origin of Life' Chemistry at UC San Diego Dies

[Thursday, May 24, 2007] Stanley L. Miller, whose famous laboratory experiments in 1952 demonstrated how the simple organic compounds considered necessary for the origin of life could have been synthesized on the primitive Earth, died yesterday. He was 77.

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Planetary Society Asteroid Tagging Contest Generates Worldwide Interest »» Planetary Society Asteroid Tagging Contest Generates Worldwide Interest

[Thursday, May 24, 2007] More than 100 teams and individuals from 25 nations are developing plans that could save Earth from a killer asteroid.  All have sent The Planetary Society notices of their intent to enter the Apophis Mission Design Competition.

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NASA SOHO Spacecraft Aids in Forecast of Solar Radiation Storms »» NASA SOHO Spacecraft Aids in Forecast of Solar Radiation Storms

[Friday, May 25, 2007] SOHO now enables scientists to forecast solar radiation storms, giving future astronauts, traveling to the moon and Mars, time to seek shelter and ground controllers time to safeguard satellites.

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Reviews Document NASA's Progress on Next Human Spacecraft »» Reviews Document NASA's Progress on Next Human Spacecraft

[Friday, May 25, 2007] NASA this week wrapped up six months of system requirements reviews for the Orion spacecraft, the Ares launch vehicles and other support systems, bringing together the Constellation Program's list of basic capability needs.

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Breathtaking views of Deuteronilus Mensae on Mars »» Breathtaking views of Deuteronilus Mensae on Mars

[Friday, May 25, 2007] The High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) on board ESA's Mars Express has captured breathtaking images of the Deuteronilus Mensae region on Mars.

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Huge waves that hit Reunion Island tracked from space »» Huge waves that hit Reunion Island tracked from space

[Tuesday, May 29, 2007] The origin and movement of waves reaching up to 11 metres that devastated France's Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean on Saturday evening have been detected with ESA's Envisat satellite.

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Student Opportunity to take part in Arctic Mars Analog Svalbard Expedition (AMASE) 2007 »» Student Opportunity to take part in Arctic Mars Analog Svalbard Expedition (AMASE) 2007

[Tuesday, May 29, 2007] Ever dreamed of taking part in an expedition among an international crew of scientists and engineers? Well here is your chance to participate in the Arctic Mars Analog Svalbard Expedition 2007.

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Spirit Update: Spirit Continues Soil Analysis »» Spirit Update: Spirit Continues Soil Analysis

[Tuesday, May 29, 2007] Spirit is healthy and spent the last week studying light and dark soil in and around the rover's tracks between "Home Plate" and "Mitcheltree Ridge."

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Opportunity Turns Up the Amps »» Opportunity Turns Up the Amps

[Tuesday, May 29, 2007] Opportunity's electrical supply returned to levels not seen since the rover first arrived on Mars as a result of three recent dust-cleaning events.

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28 new planets, 7 new brown dwarfs reported by California, Carnegie team »» 28 new planets, 7 new brown dwarfs reported by California, Carnegie team

[Tuesday, May 29, 2007] The world's largest and most prolific team of planet hunters announced today (Monday, May 28) the discovery of 28 new planets outside our solar system, increasing to 236 the total number of known exoplanets.

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NASA researcher finds days of snow melting on the rise in Greenland »» NASA researcher finds days of snow melting on the rise in Greenland

[Tuesday, May 29, 2007] In 2006, Greenland experienced more days of melting snow and at higher altitudes than average over the past 18 years, according to a new NASA-funded project using satellite observations.

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Petty Politics and Uncoordinated Outreach at NASA »» Petty Politics and Uncoordinated Outreach at NASA

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] "NASA's Vision for Space Exploration will call upon every resource - and every person - at NASA to contribute together as a team. The activities described in this letter are anything but teamwork."

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Magnetic Field Uses Sound Waves to Ignite Sun's Ring of Fire »» Magnetic Field Uses Sound Waves to Ignite Sun's Ring of Fire

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] Sound waves escaping the sun's interior create fountains of hot gas that shape and power a thin region of the sun's atmosphere, according to research funded by the NSF and NASA.

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MESSENGER Zeroes In on Venus »» MESSENGER Zeroes In on Venus

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] The MESSENGER trajectory correction maneuver completed on May 25 targeted the spacecraft close to the intended aim point 337 kilometers (209 miles) above the surface of Venus for the probe's June 5 flyby of that planet.

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NASA's FUSE Satellite Catches Collision of Titans »» NASA's FUSE Satellite Catches Collision of Titans

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] Using NASA's Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) satellite and ground-based telescopes, astronomers have determined, for the first time, the properties of a rare, extremely massive, and young binary star system.

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Screaming CMEs Warn of Radiation Storms »» Screaming CMEs Warn of Radiation Storms

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] CMEs begin when the sun launches a billion tons of electrically conducting gas (plasma) into space at millions of miles per hour. A CME cloud is laced with magnetic fields, and CMEs directed our way smash into Earth's magnetic field.

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Expedition 15 Prepares for Upcoming Spacewalks »» Expedition 15 Prepares for Upcoming Spacewalks

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin and Flight Engineer Oleg Kotov are preparing for two spacewalks on May 30.

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Spitzer nets thousands of galaxies in a giant cluster »» Spitzer nets thousands of galaxies in a giant cluster

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] In just a short amount of time, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has bagged more than a thousand previously unknown dwarf galaxies in a giant cluster of galaxies.

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NASA Administrator Michael Griffin Not Sure That Global Warming Is A Problem »» NASA Administrator Michael Griffin Not Sure That Global Warming Is A Problem

[Wednesday, May 30, 2007] "MR. GRIFFIN: I have no doubt that global -- that a trend of global warming exists. I am not sure that it is fair to say that it is a problem we must wrestle with. "

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NASA, 13 Space Agencies Release Exploration Strategy Framework »» NASA, 13 Space Agencies Release Exploration Strategy Framework

[Thursday, May 31, 2007] The document, "The Global Exploration Strategy: The Framework for Coordination," reflects a shared vision of space exploration focused on solar system destinations where humans may someday live and work.

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NASA Research Finds That Earth's Climate is Approaching »» NASA Research Finds That Earth's Climate is Approaching "Dangerous" Point

[Thursday, May 31, 2007] NASA and Columbia University Earth Institute research finds that human-made greenhouse gases have brought the Earth's climate close to critical tipping points, with potentially dangerous consequences for the planet.

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Massive Transiting Planet with 31-hour Year Found Around Distant Star »» Massive Transiting Planet with 31-hour Year Found Around Distant Star

[Thursday, May 31, 2007] "TrES-3 is an unusual planet as it orbits its parent star in just 31 hours!," said Georgi Mandushev, Lowell Observatory astronomer. "That is to say, the year on this planet lasts less than one and a third days.

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NASA Space Station Status Report 31 May 2007 »» NASA Space Station Status Report 31 May 2007

[Thursday, May 31, 2007] Two International Space Station cosmonauts stepped outside Wednesday for a 5-hour, 25-minute spacewalk, installing Service Module Debris Protection panels and rerouting a Global Positioning System antenna cable.

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