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Space Exploration News

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astrophysics, cosmology, the universe...

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Trio of supermassive black holes shake space-time

Astronomers have discovered three closely orbiting supermassive black holes in a galaxy more than 4 billion light years away. This is the tightest trio of black holes known to date. The discovery suggests that such closely packed supermassive black holes are far more common than previously thought.

Posted: Jun 25th, 2014

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Curiosity travels through ancient glaciers on Mars

3,500 million years ago the Martian crater Gale, through which the NASA rover Curiosity is currently traversing, was covered with glaciers, mainly over its central mound. Very cold liquid water also flowed through its rivers and lakes on the lower-lying areas, forming landscapes similar to those which can be found in Iceland or Alaska. This is reflected in an analysis of the images taken by the spacecraft orbiting the red planet.

Posted: Jun 25th, 2014

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Astronomers map space's icy wastes

Astronomers have made the first large-scale maps of icy material where stars are forming. In a challenge to conventional ideas about the formation of water in space, they find ice in regions with little dust or gas.

Posted: Jun 24th, 2014

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Archaeo-astronomy steps out from shadows of the past

This week, a developing field of research that merges astronomical techniques with the study of ancient man-made features and the surrounding landscapes will be highlighted at the National Astronomy Meeting (NAM) 2014 in Portsmouth.

Posted: Jun 24th, 2014

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An Earth-size diamond in space

A team of astronomers has identified possibly the coldest, faintest white dwarf star ever detected. This ancient stellar remnant is so cool that its carbon has crystallized, forming - in effect - an Earth-size diamond in space.

Posted: Jun 24th, 2014

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Mining the Moon: Panel at EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF) 2014

Who owns the moon? What kind of valuable resources does Earth's nearest neighbor hold? And how - and when - can we access them? All these questions will be debated today by a panel comprised of scientists, entrepreneurs and policy makers brought together by Google Lunar XPRIZE at the EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF) 2014.

Posted: Jun 23rd, 2014

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Time to think big: a call for a giant space telescope

In the nearly 25 years since the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST), astronomers and the public alike have enjoyed ground-breaking views of the cosmos and the suite of scientific discoveries that followed. The successor to HST, the James Webb Telescope should launch in 2018 but will have a comparatively short lifetime.

Posted: Jun 22nd, 2014

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Mysterious 'Magic Island' appears on Saturn moon

Astronomers have discovered a bright, mysterious geologic object - where one never existed - on Cassini mission radar images of Ligeia Mare, the second-largest sea on Saturn's moon Titan. Scientifically speaking, this spot is considered a 'transient feature', but the astronomers have playfully dubbed it 'Magic Island'.

Posted: Jun 22nd, 2014

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Swiftly moving gas streamer eclipses supermassive black hole

An international team of astronomers, using data from several NASA and European Space Agency (ESA) space observatories, has discovered unexpected behavior from the supermassive black hole at the heart of the galaxy NGC 5548, located 244.6 million light-years from Earth. This behavior may provide new insights into how supermassive black holes interact with their host galaxies.

Posted: Jun 19th, 2014

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