NASA Says Webb Telescope Within Budget and On Track for 2018 Launch, GAO Not So Sure

Artist’s concept of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). Image Credit: NASA/ESA

The most sophisticated and ambitious space-based observatory ever conceived by the human mind continues to take shape through various aerospace centers across the country, where work is progressing steadily with development of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). This year is a […]

Scientists Create Color-Based Catalog of Earthly Life Forms to Help Search for Alien Biology

A hypothetical rendering of colorful plant life on a habitable exoplanet. Although most such alien life, if it exists, found with this technique may be microscopic, it illustrates how analysis of color could help scientists learn more about the physical nature of alien biology. Image Credit: NASA/Caltech/Doug Cummings

With exoplanets now being discovered by […]

New Technique to Study Clouds on Exoplanets Developed by Researchers at MIT

Artist’s conception of clouds on Kepler-7b. Image Credit: NASA (edited by Jose-Luis Olivares/MIT)

While exoplanets are now being discovered by the thousands, it is still a painstaking process to determine any specific details about them, since they are so incredibly far away. However, astronomers have been devising new techniques to do just that, including […]

Chandra X-Ray Observatory Continues to Unfold Secrets of Universe

From NASA: “A newly discovered object in the galaxy NGC 2276 may prove to be an important black hole that helps fill in the evolutionary story of these exotic objects. This source , known as NGC2276-3c, is likely an intermediate-mass black hole with about 50,000 times the mass of the Sun. The main graphic […]

New Horizons Sends Back New Photos of Pluto on Clyde Tombaugh's Birthday

Two new images of Pluto and its largest moon Charon, taken on Jan. 25 and Jan. 27, 2015 by the New Horizons spacecraft. Image Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute

As the New Horizons spacecraft continues speeding toward its rendezvous with Pluto this summer, it has just sent back new photos […]

Massive Alien Ring System Is Much Larger Than Saturn's—And May Contain Exomoons

Artist’s conception of the ring system circling the young giant planet (or brown dwarf) J1407b. Image Credit: Ron Miller

Astronomers today announced yet another mind-boggling finding: a ring system which orbits a distant giant planet has been found to be much larger and more massive than Saturn’s ring system, the best known example in our own […]

NASA Undecided on Asteroid Redirect Mission Concept as Near-Earth Asteroid Approaches for Flyby

This graphic depicts the passage of asteroid 2004 BL86, which will come no closer than about three times the distance from Earth to the moon on Jan. 26, 2015. Due to its orbit around the sun, the asteroid is currently only visible by astronomers with large telescopes who are located in the southern hemisphere. But by Jan. 26, the space rock's changing position will make it visible to those in the northern hemisphere. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

This graphic depicts the passage of asteroid 2004 BL86, which will come no closer than about three times the distance from Earth to the Moon on Jan. 26, 2015. Due to its orbit around the Sun, the asteroid is currently only visible by astronomers with large telescopes who are located in the southern hemisphere. […]

Gemini Planet Imager Concludes Year-Long Commissioning Phase, Begins Regular Science Observations With Impressive First Results

The circumstellar disk around the young star HR 4796A, as imaged by the Gemini Planet Imager, which is mounted on the 8.2-m Gemini South telescope in Chile. These images reveal a complex pattern of variations in brightness and polarization around the HR 4796A disk. The western side (tilted closer to the Earth) appears brighter […]

Chandra X-Ray Observatory Helps Astronomers Weigh Most Massive Galaxy Cluster Discovered to Date

A composite, multi-wavelength image of the young galaxy cluster XDCP J0044.0-2033, also known as the Gioiello Cluster, which is located 9.6 billion light-years away. In the image, X-ray wavelengths appear purple, infrared appear as large red halos around some galaxies, and visible light appears as are red, green, and blue. Image Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/INAF/P.Tozzi, […]

NASA’s Fermi Mission Provides More Insight on Thunderstorm Gamma Rays

New research merging Fermi data with information from ground-based radar and lightning networks shows that terrestrial gamma-ray flashes arise from an unexpected diversity of storms and may be more common than currently thought. Image Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

Gamma rays make up a considerable amount of the cosmos. They can be emitted from […]