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E.g., 11/22/2017
Your search has returned 29 images:
  • Cepheus B
  • Illustration of Cassini's death
  • Titan
Your search has returned 34 articles:
  • News

    Ice in space might flow like honey and bubble like champagne

    View the video

    Ice in space may break out the bubbly. Zapping simulated space ice with imitation starlight makes the ice bubble like champagne. If this happens in space, this liquidlike behavior could help organic molecules form at the edges of infant planetary systems. The experiment provides a peek into the possible origins of life.

    Shogo Tachibana of Hokkaido University in...

    09/29/2017 - 14:01 Astronomy, Planetary Science, Astrobiology
  • News

    R.I.P. Cassini

    PASADENA, Calif. — Cassini went down fighting.

    After 20 years in space and 13 years orbiting Saturn, the veteran spacecraft spent its last 90 seconds or so firing its thrusters as hard as it could to keep sending Saturnian secrets back to Earth for as long as possible.

    The spacecraft entered Saturn’s atmosphere at about 3:31 a.m. PDT on September 15 and immediately began running...

    09/15/2017 - 09:08 Astronomy, Planetary Science, Astrobiology
  • News

    Potential ingredient for alien life found on Titan

    A molecule that could help build otherworldly life is present on Saturn’s moon Titan, researchers have discovered.

    Vinyl cyanide, a compound predicted to form membranelike structures, is created in Titan’s upper atmosphere, scientists report July 28 in Science Advances. There’s enough vinyl cyanide (C2H3CN) in the moon’s liquid methane seas to make about 10 million cell-like balls per...

    07/28/2017 - 14:32 Astrobiology, Planetary Science
  • News in Brief

    Astronomers may have found an exomoon, and Hubble is going to check

    The first evidence for an exomoon — a moon orbiting a planet orbiting a distant star — may have been spotted in data from the Kepler space telescope. But surprisingly, exomoons in general may be rare, at least around planets close to their stars.

    Alex Teachey and David Kipping of Columbia University analyzed the dips in light from exoplanets passing, or transiting, in front of their...

    07/28/2017 - 06:00 Astronomy, Exoplanets, Astrobiology
  • News

    Water bears will survive the end of the world as we know it

    Water bears may be Earth’s last animal standing.

    These tough little buggers, also known as tardigrades, could keep calm and carry on until the sun boils Earth’s oceans away billions of years from now, according to a new study that examined water bears’ resistance to various astronomical disasters. This finding, published July 14 in Scientific Reports, suggests that complex life can be...

    07/14/2017 - 11:40 Animals, Astronomy, Astrobiology
  • News

    Food for microbes found on Enceladus

    Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus packs snacks suitable for microbial life.

    Data from the Cassini spacecraft show that the vaporous plume shooting out of the moon’s southern pole contains molecular hydrogen. It is probably generated when water in the moon’s subterranean ocean reacts with rock in its core, researchers report in the April 14 Science. Such reactions at hydrothermal vents and in...

    04/13/2017 - 14:00 Planetary Science, Astrobiology
  • News

    Microbes survived inside giant cave crystals for up to 50,000 years

    BOSTON — Microbes found stowed inside giant crystals in caves in Chihuahua, Mexico, may have survived there for tens of thousands of years. The microorganisms, which appear to be vastly different from nearly all life-forms found on Earth, offer a good indication of how resilient life can be in extremely harsh environments, including those found on other planets.

    “These organisms are so...

    02/18/2017 - 12:55 Microbes, Genetics, Astrobiology
  • Letters to the Editor

    Readers weigh in on ET and the meaning of life

    All about aliens

    New telescopes and spacecraft will soon help researchers scour our galaxy for signs of extraterrestrial life. But what might aliens look like? And if they do exist, why haven’t they returned our calls? These are just some of the questions addressed in the Science News special report “In Search of Aliens” (SN: 4/30/16, p. 24).

    Readers enjoyed Tina Hesman Saey’s feature “...

    06/16/2016 - 14:38 Astrobiology, Earth, Animals
  • News in Brief

    Comet 67P carries two ingredients for life: glycine, phosphorus

    Two more of the ingredients for life as we know it have turned up in space, this time from a comet orbiting the sun. While hints of both have been seen in comets before, this is the clearest evidence to date.

    Glycine, the smallest of the 20 amino acids that build proteins, is floating in the tenuous atmosphere of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, researchers report online May 27 in...

    05/27/2016 - 14:00 Planetary Science, Astrobiology, Chemistry
  • News

    Young sun’s super solar flares helped set early Earth up for life

    Solar outbursts may have supplied early Earth with the right stuff for life.

    Based on telescope observations of young sunlike stars, researchers estimate that “super” solar flares bombarded Earth with energetic particles at least once a day around 4 billion years ago. Collisions between the particles and molecules in Earth’s atmosphere produced nitrous oxide, a planet-warming greenhouse...

    05/23/2016 - 11:00 Astronomy, Climate, Astrobiology