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Space Exploration News

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astrophysics, cosmology, the universe...

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Hubble captures comet ISON

Hubble photographed a jet blasting dust particles off the sunward-facing side of the comet's nucleus. Preliminary measurements suggest that ISON's nucleus is no larger than three or four miles across.

Posted: Apr 23rd, 2013

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Space scientists find way to monitor elusive collisions in space

Many collisions occur between asteroids and other objects in our solar system, but scientists are not always able to detect or track these impacts from Earth. The 'rogue debris' created by such collisions can sometimes catch us by surprise. UCLA space scientists have now devised a way to monitor these types of collisions in interplanetary space by using a new method to determine the mass of magnetic clouds that result from the impacts.

Posted: Apr 23rd, 2013

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Herschel links Jupiter's water to comet impact

ESA's Herschel space observatory has solved a long-standing mystery as to the origin of water in the upper atmosphere of Jupiter, finding conclusive evidence that it was delivered by the dramatic impact of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 in July 1994.

Posted: Apr 23rd, 2013

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Grains of sand from ancient supernova found in meteorites

Scientists working at Washington University in St. Louis have discovered two tiny grains of silica (the most common constituent of sand) in meteorites that fell to earth in Antarctica. Because of their isotopic composition these two grains are thought to be pure samples from a massive star that exploded before the birth of the solar system, perhaps the supernova whose explosion is thought to have triggered the collapse of a giant molecular cloud, giving birth to the Sun.

Posted: Apr 22nd, 2013

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Using black holes to measure the universe's rate of expansion

Prof. Hagai Netzer of Tel Aviv University has developed a method that uses black holes to measure distances of billions of light years with a high degree of accuracy. The ability to measure these distances will allow scientists to see further into the past of the universe than ever before.

Posted: Apr 22nd, 2013

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Hubble sees a horsehead of a different color

Astronomers have used NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to photograph the iconic Horsehead Nebula in a new, infrared light to mark the 23rd anniversary of the famous observatory's launch aboard the space shuttle Discovery on April 24, 1990.

Posted: Apr 19th, 2013

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Focus on growing threat of space debris

The continuing growth in space debris poses an increasing threat to economically vital orbital regions. Next week, hundreds of top experts from across the globe will meet at Europe's largest-ever debris forum to share their latest research findings and discuss potential solutions.

Posted: Apr 19th, 2013

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Despite young age, galaxy births billions of stars

A Cornell researcher and his team have uncovered an oddity in the early cosmos: A newly discovered distant galaxy, born just after the big bang, is starting to furiously churn out stars at peak capacity - despite its young age. The unique galaxy is forming 2,000 times the number of stars as our own Milky Way.

Posted: Apr 18th, 2013

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X-ray view of a thousand-year-old cosmic tapestry

A long Chandra observation reveals the SN 1006 supernova remnant in exquisite detail. By overlapping 10 different pointings of Chandra's field-of-view, astronomers have stitched together a cosmic tapestry of the debris field that was created when a white dwarf star exploded, sending its material hurtling into space as seen from Earth over a millennium ago.

Posted: Apr 17th, 2013

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90 million laser shots bring Wind satellite back on track

Developing new ways of monitoring Earth is always demanding, but ESA's Aeolus mission has faced some particularly difficult technical challenges. However, with the success of intense high-energy tests on its novel laser there is now light at the end of the tunnel for this unique mission.

Posted: Apr 17th, 2013

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Pinpointing the most fertile galaxies in the universe

Using the compound telescope ALMA, a team of researchers has pinpointed the positions of more than 100 of the most fertile star-forming galaxies. The precise position measurements clear up a mystery about the observed productivity of these objects. They also show that previous studies of these objects have often suffered from mis-identifications, and how precise measurements like these new results avoid this kind of error.

Posted: Apr 17th, 2013

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