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January 19, 2017
SATURN DAILY
Catching Cassini's call



Paris (ESA) Jan 17, 2017
This week, ESA deep-space radio dishes on two continents are listening for signals from the international Cassini spacecraft, now on its final tour of Saturn. ESA's sensitive tracking antennas at New Norcia, Western Australia, and Malargue, Argentina, are being called in to help with crucial observations during Cassini's last months in orbit, dubbed the 'Grand Finale'. The Cassini-Huygens mission is one of the most successful exploration endeavours ever. Launched in October 1997, the Cassini orbit ... read more

SATURN DAILY
Huygens: 'Ground Truth' From an Alien Moon
After a two-and-a-half-hour descent, the metallic, saucer-shaped spacecraft came to rest with a thud on a dark floodplain covered in cobbles of water ice, in temperatures hundreds of degrees below f ... more
ROCKET SCIENCE
NASA testing SLS for transonic behavior
Tucked away in Hampton, Virginia, is a 56-year-old NASA wind tunnel capable of generating winds speeds of up to 900 miles per hour. In its lifetime, the Transonic Dynamics Tunnel has hosted hundreds ... more
SATURN DAILY
NASA image showcases Saturn's sun-soaked north pole
Cassini is now ring-grazing, but its orbital path earlier this year sent the NASA probe high above Saturn's north pole. In late September, the vantage revealed the pole fully illuminated by the sun's rays. ... more
SATURN DAILY
Cassini offers a crash course in ring world orbital mechanics
It may look as though Saturn's moon Mimas is crashing through the rings in this image taken by NASA's Cassini spacecraft, but Mimas is actually 28,000 miles (45,000 kilometers) away from the rings. ... more
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EXO WORLDS
ALMA finds compelling evidence for pair of infant planets around young star
Astronomers now know that our galaxy is teeming with planets, from rocky worlds roughly the size of Earth to gas giants bigger than Jupiter. Nearly every one of these exoplanets has been discovered ... more
EXO WORLDS
Rings around young star suggest planet formation in progress
Rice University astronomers and their colleagues have for the first time mapped gases in three dark rings around a distant star. The rings mark spaces where planets are thought to have formed from d ... more
SATURN DAILY
Saturn's bulging core implies moons younger than thought
Freshly harvested data from NASA's Cassini mission reveals that the ringed planet's moons may be younger than previously thought. "All of these Cassini mission measurements are changing our view of ... more
SATURN DAILY
Cassini Beams Back First Images from New Orbit
NASA's Cassini spacecraft has sent to Earth its first views of Saturn's atmosphere since beginning the latest phase of its mission. The new images show scenes from high above Saturn's northern hemis ... more
SATURN DAILY
Cassini Makes First Ring-Grazing Plunge
NASA's Saturn-orbiting Cassini spacecraft has made its first close dive past the outer edges of Saturn's rings since beginning its penultimate mission phase on Nov. 30. Cassini crossed through the p ... more


NASA Saturn Mission Prepares for 'Ring-Grazing Orbits'

SATURN DAILY
Vast equatorial jet stream in Saturn's atmosphere are revealed
The atmosphere of the planet Saturn, a gas giant ten times bigger than the Earth consisting mostly of hydrogen, has a wider, more intense jet stream than all the planets in the Solar System. Winds g ... more
SATURN DAILY
Watching Summer Clouds on Titan
NASA's Cassini spacecraft watched clouds of methane moving across the far northern regions of Saturn's largest moon, Titan, on Oct. 29 and 30, 2016. Several sets of clouds develop, move over t ... more

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Mars Rover Curiosity Examines Possible Mud Cracks
Scientists used NASA's Curiosity Mars rover in recent weeks to examine slabs of rock cross-hatched with shallow ridges that likely originated as cracks in drying mud. "Mud cracks are the most likely scenario here," said Curiosity science team member Nathan Stein. He is a graduate student at Caltech in Pasadena, California, who led the investigation of a site called "Old Soaker," on lower M ... more
Opportunity Continues Its Journey South Along Crater Rim

New Year yields interesting bright soil for Opportunity rover

HI-SEAS Mission V crew preparing to enter Mars simulation habitat

The moon is older than scientists thought
A UCLA-led research team reports that the moon is at least 4.51 billion years old, or 40 million to 140 million years older than scientists previously thought. The findings - based on an analysis of minerals from the moon called zircons that were brought back to Earth by the Apollo 14 mission in 1971 - are published Jan. 11 in the journal Science Advances. The moon's age has been a hotly d ... more
The science behind the Lunar Hydrogen Polar Mapper mission

Eugene Cernan, last man to walk on moon, dead at 82

New map of the Moon under creation in China

Huygens: 'Ground Truth' From an Alien Moon
After a two-and-a-half-hour descent, the metallic, saucer-shaped spacecraft came to rest with a thud on a dark floodplain covered in cobbles of water ice, in temperatures hundreds of degrees below freezing. The alien probe worked frantically to collect and transmit images and data about its environs - in mere minutes its mothership would drop below the local horizon, cutting off its link to the ... more
Catching Cassini's call

NASA image showcases Saturn's sun-soaked north pole

Cassini offers a crash course in ring world orbital mechanics

China launches commercial rocket mission Kuaizhou-1A
The rocket Kuaizhou-1A (KZ-1A) has sent three satellites into space in its first commercial mission on Monday. The rocket, carrying the satellite JL-1 and two CubeSats XY-S1 and Caton-1, blasted off from northwestern China's Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center at around 12:11 p.m. Monday Beijing Time, according to a statement from the center. The KZ-1A was developed from the Kuaizhou-1 r ... more
China's first cargo spacecraft to leave factory

China Space Plan to Develop "Strength and Size"

Beijing's space program soars in 2016

Lowell Observatory to renovate Pluto discovery telescope
The instrument at Lowell Observatory used by Clyde Tombaugh to discover Pluto will soon undergo renovation. The year-long project, set to begin on January 12, will include restoration of both the historic telescope and the wooden dome that houses it. While the telescope will be removed from the dome during this work, the dome will be open from time to time for public tours as work allows. ... more
Flying observatory makes observations of Jupiter previously only possible from space

How a moon slows the decay of Pluto's atmosphere

York U research identifies icy ridges on Pluto

Looking for life in all the right places with the right tool
Researchers have invented a range of instruments from giant telescopes to rovers to search for life in outer space, but so far, these efforts have yielded no definitive evidence that it exists beyond Earth. Now scientists have developed a new tool that can look for signs of life with 10,000 times more sensitivity than instruments carried on previous spaceflight missions. Their report appears in ... more
Could dark streaks in Venusian clouds be microbial life

VLT to Search for Planets in Alpha Centauri System

Hubble detects 'exocomets' taking the plunge into a young star

The Last Free American Board Game
First Light for Breakthrough Listen at Parkes Telescope
Breakthrough Listen, the 10-year, $100-million astronomical search for intelligent life beyond Earth launched in 2015 by Internet entrepreneur Yuri Milner and Stephen Hawking, has announced its first observations using the Parkes Radio Telescope in New South Wales, Australia. Parkes joins the Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia, USA, and the Automated Planet Finder (APF) at Lick Ob ... more
Search for ET underway with Parkes Radio Telescope

Breakthrough Listen to Search for Intelligent Life Around Tabby's Star

New bacteria groups, and stunning diversity, discovered underground

China to launch electromagnetic monitoring satellite for earthquake study
China will launch a satellite this year to gather electromagnetic data that may be used in monitoring and forecasting earthquakes. According to China's earthquake administrative agencies on Tuesday, the satellite will be launched in the latter half of this year. Movements of the Earth's crust generate electromagnetic radiation which can be observed from space. By collecting dat ... more
Sentinel-2B launch preparations off to a flying start

China receives imagery from high-resolution remote sensing satellites

Study tracks 'memory' of soil moisture

Our galaxy's black hole is spewing out planet-size 'spitballs'
Every few thousand years, an unlucky star wanders too close to the black hole at the center of the Milky Way. The black hole's powerful gravity rips the star apart, sending a long streamer of gas whipping outward. That would seem to be the end of the story, but it's not. New research shows that not only can the gas gather itself into planet-size objects, but those objects then are flung througho ... more
CU Boulder to lead operations for NASA black holes mission

Light source discovery 'challenges basic assumption' of physics

Seeing the quantum future literally

International SMR and Advanced Reactor Summit 2018 - March 27-28 - Atlanta USA
Extraterrestrial impact preceded ancient global warming event
A comet strike may have triggered the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), a rapid warming of the Earth caused by an accumulation of atmospheric carbon dioxide 56 million years ago, which offers analogs to global warming today. Sorting through samples of sediment from the time period, researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute discovered evidence of the strike in the form of micro ... more
Scientists use Moon to study dinosaur killer

At the Jersey shore, signs of a comet, and a climate crisis

Research supports idea that moon was created by object hitting infant Earth

Successful Deep Space Maneuver for NASA's OSIRIS-REx Spacecraft
New tracking data confirms that NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft aced its first Deep Space Maneuver (DSM-1) on Dec. 28, 2016. The engine burn sets up the spacecraft for an Earth gravity assist this fall as it continues its two-year journey to the asteroid Bennu. The large maneuver was the first using OSIRIS-REx's main engines and resulted in a 964 miles per hour (431 meters per second) change ... more
How the darkness and the cold killed the dinosaurs

NASA's Newly Announced Mission Could Solve the Mystery of Water on Asteroid Psyche

Asteroid sleuths go back to the future

Tracking Antarctic adaptations in diatoms
Diatoms are a common type of photosynthetic microorganism, found in many environments from marine to soil; in the oceans, they are responsible for more than a third of the global ocean carbon captured during photosynthesis. This leads to a significant amount of sequestered carbon ending up in the sediments at the bottom of the ocean. In both freshwater and marine ecosystems, the base of th ... more
Deep seafloor valleys found beneath West Antarctic glaciers

Inception of the last ice age

Ice cracks force shutdown of UK Antarctic station

China launches commercial rocket mission Kuaizhou-1A
The rocket Kuaizhou-1A (KZ-1A) has sent three satellites into space in its first commercial mission on Monday. The rocket, carrying the satellite JL-1 and two CubeSats XY-S1 and Caton-1, blasted off from northwestern China's Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center at around 12:11 p.m. Monday Beijing Time, according to a statement from the center. The KZ-1A was developed from the Kuaizhou-1 r ... more
China's first cargo spacecraft to leave factory

China Space Plan to Develop "Strength and Size"

Beijing's space program soars in 2016

Daily Newsletters - Space - Military - Environment - Energy
Tracking Antarctic adaptations in diatoms
Diatoms are a common type of photosynthetic microorganism, found in many environments from marine to soil; in the oceans, they are responsible for more than a third of the global ocean carbon captured during photosynthesis. This leads to a significant amount of sequestered carbon ending up in the sediments at the bottom of the ocean. In both freshwater and marine ecosystems, the base of th ... more
Deep seafloor valleys found beneath West Antarctic glaciers

Inception of the last ice age

Ice cracks force shutdown of UK Antarctic station

Huygens: 'Ground Truth' From an Alien Moon
After a two-and-a-half-hour descent, the metallic, saucer-shaped spacecraft came to rest with a thud on a dark floodplain covered in cobbles of water ice, in temperatures hundreds of degrees below freezing. The alien probe worked frantically to collect and transmit images and data about its environs - in mere minutes its mothership would drop below the local horizon, cutting off its link to the ... more
Catching Cassini's call

NASA image showcases Saturn's sun-soaked north pole

Cassini offers a crash course in ring world orbital mechanics



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