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Updated: 5 hours 32 min ago

The Sky This Week from May 17 to 26

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 04:00
The waning gibbous Moon passes both Jupiter and Saturn this week, while Jupiter’s largest moon seemingly disappears as it slides into the giant planet’s shadow.
Categories: Astronomy

New Horizons reveals Ultima Thule's quiet, lonesome past

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 04:00
The latest data from the distant probe reveal a history of gentle collisions and few disturbances.
Categories: Astronomy

O’Neill colonies: A decades-long dream for settling space

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 04:00
Amazon's Jeff Bezos, like many before him, is enamored with the idea of spinning space cities that might sustain future humans.
Categories: Astronomy

Hubble spies "Two-Face" galaxy that suffered a glancing blow

Thu, 05/16/2019 - 04:00
A cosmic hit-and-run some 30 million light-years away has left one galaxy with an identity crisis. For billions of years, the now-irregular NGC 4485 lived a nice and normal life as a standard spiral galaxy located in the constellation Canes Venatici (the Hunting Dogs). Then, a few million years back, NGC 4485 experienced a near-miss when the equivalent of a galactic semi-truck (NGC 4490) careened past it, creating a gravitational wake that wreaked havoc for both parties. The result? Based on
Categories: Astronomy

China's Yutu-2 rover finds ancient rocks in Moon's biggest crater

Wed, 05/15/2019 - 04:00
The persistent rover Yutu-2 has already surpassed its expected lifetime, but it's clearly not done yet.
Categories: Astronomy

Tonight’s SpaceX Starlink launch could be the start of a new internet

Wed, 05/15/2019 - 04:00
The first batch of 60 Starlink satellites will start SpaceX’s plans for a global satellite internet.
Categories: Astronomy

Project Artemis: NASA names its 2024 Moon mission

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 04:00
On Monday night, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced the space agency has named its planned mission to put humans back on the lunar surface: Artemis. As the Greek deity most associated with the Moon, and the god Apollo’s twin sister, the namesake choice was an obvious fit. On the logistical side, Bridenstine also announced that NASA will ask Congress for an additional $1.6 billion in funding to jumpstart the program. NASA has not put forward a full budget for the ambitious Arte
Categories: Astronomy

Apollo-era Moon quakes hint that Moon is still active today

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 04:00
A new analysis of Apollo-era quakes on the Moon reveal that our satellite is probably still tectonically active. Detectors laid down by Apollo astronauts half a century ago revealed small shakes on the Moon, but their causes weren’t well understood. Meteor strikes, like those that caused the Moon’s most distinctive features, still rain down today, so astronomers couldn’t be sure whether the Moon was shaking itself, or being shaken by external forces. Now, new research has track
Categories: Astronomy

Tiny spacecraft tested as part of Breakthrough Starshot plan for interstellar travel

Fri, 05/10/2019 - 04:00
The first human-made spacecraft to reach another star system might fit in the palm of your hand. That’s the design engineers from the University of California, Santa Barbara are working on. The tiny craft, which weighs about as much same as a stick of gum, had its first test flight in April, where it soared more than 100,000 feet in the air. Its creators hope its successor will one day fly in space, perhaps even beyond the solar system to neighboring stars like Alpha Centauri. Wafercraft T
Categories: Astronomy

The Sky This Week from May 10 to 19

Fri, 05/10/2019 - 04:00
Open clusters play a starring role in this week’s sky, as a waxing crescent Moon passes in front of Cancer’s Beehive Cluster (M44) and Mars slides just north of M35 in Gemini.
Categories: Astronomy

Early galaxies shone brighter and hotter than expected

Fri, 05/10/2019 - 04:00
These brilliant star factories turned on the first lights that streamed freely through the universe.
Categories: Astronomy

Bezos unveils bold plans for human spaceflight and 'Blue Moon' lunar lander

Thu, 05/09/2019 - 04:00
On Thursday, Blue Origin founder and Amazon owner Jeff Bezos unveiled the Blue Moon lander, a spacecraft that can deliver up to 6.5 tons of cargo – and possibly crew – to the lunar surface. The announcement was made at a news conference in Washington, D.C. Along with Blue Moon, he revealed his new BE-7 rocket for the lander, which he says has been in development for three years. If all goes according to plan, the company will test fire the rocket for the first time this summer. Toget
Categories: Astronomy

The universe's first supernovae spewed jets of material into nearby galaxies

Thu, 05/09/2019 - 04:00
A strange star without much iron, yet tons of zinc, indicates some of the very first supernovae might have exploded asymmetrically.
Categories: Astronomy

Antimatter acts like regular matter in classic double-slit experiment

Wed, 05/08/2019 - 04:00
For the first time, researchers have shown that antimatter interferes as a quantum wave in the same way regular matter does.
Categories: Astronomy

Could quantum mechanics explain the existence of space-time?

Tue, 05/07/2019 - 04:00
Rod Serling knew all about dimensions. His Twilight Zone was a dimension of imagination, a dimension of sight and sound and mind, a dimension as vast as space and timeless as infinity. It was all very clear except for the space and time part, the dimensions of real life. Serling never explained them. Of course, ever since Einstein, scientists have also been scratching their heads about how to make sense of space and time. Before then, almost everybody thought Isaac Newton had figured it all out.
Categories: Astronomy

NASA’s DART mission will try to deflect a near-Earth asteroid

Tue, 05/07/2019 - 04:00
Astronomers are preparing a response for future asteroids on a collision course with Earth.
Categories: Astronomy

Merging neutron stars gave solar system heavy elements

Mon, 05/06/2019 - 04:00
Before the planets in our solar system formed or the Sun turned on and started shining, two other stars had to die. Their deaths and later collision would seed the area where our area with many of the heavy materials needed for life on Earth. Now, 4.6 billion years later, astronomers are piecing together the story of these long-dead stars. To do this, researchers studied different ways to make the heavy elements in question – exploding stars or violent collisions between stars – al
Categories: Astronomy

Astronomers stitch Hubble’s hits into ‘Legacy Deep Field’ image

Mon, 05/06/2019 - 04:00
Scientists combined more than 7,500 exposures to create the deepest, widest view yet of the early universe.
Categories: Astronomy

Venus reimagined: A new image of an active world

Fri, 05/03/2019 - 04:00
A new analysis of venusian lava flows shows they may have formed less than 250,000 years ago, suggesting a significant fraction of Venus' roughly 1,600 volcanoes are still active.
Categories: Astronomy

The Sky This Week from May 3 to 12

Fri, 05/03/2019 - 04:00
The Eta Aquariid meteor shower peaks under a Moon-free sky this week, while Mars appears as a third horn for Taurus the Bull.
Categories: Astronomy

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