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E.g., 10/23/2017
E.g., 10/23/2017
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  • Dawn spacecraft over Ceres
  • Enceladus
  • illustration of neutron star collision
Your search has returned 1324 articles:
  • Science Ticker

    Dawn spacecraft will keep orbiting the dwarf planet Ceres indefinitely

    It’s a new day for the Dawn spacecraft. The NASA spacecraft, which has been orbiting the dwarf planet Ceres since 2015, just got its final marching orders: Keep orbiting Ceres indefinitely.

    The extension, which NASA announced October 19, will be the second time Dawn’s mission at Ceres has been renewed. It means Dawn will still be in orbit when Ceres makes its closest approach to the sun...

    10/20/2017 - 15:15 Astronomy, Planetary Science
  • How Bizarre

    Here’s what space toilets can teach us about finding signs of alien life

    The search for life may get an assist from the call of nature. Astronomers can learn how to study the plumes of subsurface ocean water spewing from icy moons like Saturn’s Enceladus from an unlikely source: Space toilets.

    Future spacecraft might scoop up samples of Enceladus’ plumes. Figuring out what to expect is tricky: It’s hard to replicate the plumes in Earth-based labs. But...

    10/17/2017 - 17:38 Astronomy, Planetary Science
  • News

    Neutron star collision showers the universe with a wealth of discoveries

    View the video

    WASHINGTON — Two ultradense cores of dead stars have produced a long-awaited cosmic collision, showering scientists with riches.

    The event was the first direct sighting of a smashup of neutron stars, which are formed when aging stars explode and leave behind a neutron-rich remnant. In the wake of the collision, the churning residue forged gold, silver, platinum and a...

    10/16/2017 - 10:00 Astronomy
  • Science Ticker

    Measured distance within the Milky Way gives clues to what our galaxy looks like

    For the first time, astronomers have directly measured the distance to a spot clear across the galaxy. The established but challenging technique promises a new way to map the structure of the Milky Way.

    This technique, called parallax, has measured distances to stars since the 1830s. But because of galactic dust in the way, it has been difficult to use parallax on stars on the opposite...

    10/12/2017 - 14:45 Astronomy
  • News

    Oddball dwarf planet Haumea has a ring

    Haumea can do the hula-hoop. The egg-shaped dwarf planet is the first object beyond Neptune to be spotted sporting a ring of particles.

    “It now appears that rings can be common in the outer solar system,” says Jose-Luis Ortiz of the Institute of Astrophysics of Andalusia in Granada, Spain.

    On January 21, Ortiz and colleagues used 12 telescopes at 10 observatories to peer into the...

    10/11/2017 - 13:00 Astronomy, Planetary Science
  • 50 years ago, a spacecraft discovered oxygen in moon rocks

    The earthy moon

    Space scientists have been intrigued for years with the possibility of finding usable oxygen on the moon — not in the lunar atmosphere, since there essentially is none, but in the rocks. As long ago as 1962 … [NASA researchers] predicted vast lunar processing plants turning out 4,000 pounds of liquid oxygen per month, both for breathing and as an oxidizer for rocket fuel...

    10/05/2017 - 07:00 Astronomy
  • Feature

    David Kipping seeks new and unexpected worlds

    David Kipping, 33AstronomerColumbia University

    By early next spring, astronomer David Kipping hopes to know if the object he’s spent his early career searching for is really there.

    An astronomer at Columbia University, Kipping is perhaps most known for a project sifting through data from the Kepler space telescope on more than a thousand planets orbiting distant stars. But he’s more...

    10/04/2017 - 13:49 Astronomy, Exoplanets
  • News

    Why it’s good news that Pluto doesn’t have rings

    Pluto has no rings — New Horizons triple-checked. An exhaustive search for rings and dust particles around the dwarf planet before, during and after the spacecraft flew past Pluto in 2015 has come up empty.

    “It’s a very long paper to say we didn’t find anything,” says team member Tod Lauer of the analysis, posted online September 23 at arXiv.org. But the nonresult could help scientists...

    10/04/2017 - 11:30 Astronomy, Planetary Science
  • News

    Trio wins physics Nobel Prize for gravitational wave detection

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    Subtle cosmic vibrations kicked up by swirling black holes have captured the public imagination — and the minds of the physics Nobel Prize committee members, too.

    Three scientists who laid the groundwork for the first direct detection of gravitational waves have won the Nobel Prize in physics. Rainer Weiss of MIT, and Kip Thorne and Barry Barish, both of Caltech,...

    10/03/2017 - 06:08 Physics, Astronomy
  • Mystery Solved

    How a meteor shower helped solve the case of the vanishing comet

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    The reappearance of a long-lost meteor shower has finally explained what happened to a missing comet named 289P/Blanpain.

    That comet was spotted only once in 1819 and never again, unusual for a body orbiting the sun. But in 2003, astronomers found a small asteroid moving along the Blanpain orbit, suggesting the space rock might be the comet (or a piece of it) after...

    10/02/2017 - 10:00 Astronomy, Planetary Science