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AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch SMAP on a Delta II 7320 rocket from Vandenberg AFB, CA
scheduled for:
29 Jan 15 14:20:42 GMT
29 Jan 15 6:20:42 PST
29 Jan 15 9:20:42 Eastern

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Astronomers Observe Cosmic Fast Radio Burst in Real Time, Yet Mystery of Their Origin Deepens

A schematic illustration of the Parkes radio telescope receiving the polarised signal from the distant fast radio burst FRB 140514, the first one to be discovered by astronomers in real-time. Image Credit: Swinburne Astronomy Productions

Detective novels aside, astronomy and astrophysics could well be considered as the next best occupation for anyone who loves […]

Astronomers Measure Galactic Winds at Milky Way's Center, Detect Record-Breaking X-Ray Flares From Its Supermassive Black Hole

A composite image of the area around the supermassive black hole at the center of the Milky Way, known as Sagittarius A* (Sgr A*), taken with NASA’s Chandra X-ray space telescope. The colors in the main image represent medium, and high-energy X-rays as red, green, and blue respectively. The inset box shows a giant […]

Dust in the (Interstellar) Wind: Seven Particles of Possible Interstellar Origin Identified in Samples Returned by NASA's Stardust Spacecraft

A team of researchers has identified seven dust particles that were returned to Earth in 2006 by NASA’s Stardust spacecraft, which might have originated in the interstellar medium. This false-color image shows a diffraction pattern created by one of these particles, named Orion. Image Credit: Zack Gainsforth

Following a preliminary analysis of the dust […]

ESA's 'Discovery Machine' Gets Ready for Science: Gaia Concludes Commissioning Phase, Begins Primary Five-Year Mission

Artist’s concept of the Gaia. Having recently completed a rigorous test and commissioning phase, the space observatory began its five-year primary science mission of mapping and cataloguing approximately 1 billion stars in the Milky Way galaxy. Image Credit: ESA–D. Ducros, 2013

Following the successful conclusion of a very demanding and extensive six-month commissioning period, […]

From a Galaxy Far, Far Away: Astronomers Discover Ancient Super-Earths in Our Galactic Neighborhood

Artistic representation of the recently discovered, potentially habitable world Kapteyn b, with the globular cluster Omega Centauri in the background. It is believed that the Omega Centauri is the remaining core of a dwarf galaxy that merged with our own galaxy billions of years ago, bringing Kapteyn’s star along. Credit/Caption: PHL @ UPR Arecibo, […]

Searching for Our Birthplace in the Galaxy: Astronomers Discover Potential Solar 'Sibling'

A visible image of the star HD 162826 (at right) in the constellation of Hercules, taken from the Digitized Sky Survey (DSS). A new study has identified the star as a being a solar sibling, thought to have been formed inside the same interstellar gas cloud that also gave birth to the Sun. Image […]

ESA's 'Mission: Impossible' Sees First Light: Gaia Opens Her Eyes to the Galaxy

One of the first images taken by the Gaia space telescope during the commissioning phase of its mission, showing the star α Aquarii, also known as Sadalmelik, in the constellation of Aquarius. Image Credit: ESA/Airbus DS

Originally perceived by astronomers as a space mission that was unlikely to ever happen, the European Space Agency’s […]

Fermi Gamma-Ray Telescope Embarks on Second Mission of Discovery

The maps in this animation show how the sky looks at gamma-ray energies above 100 million electron volts (MeV) with a view centered on the north galactic pole. The first frame shows the sky during a three-hour interval prior to GRB 130427A. The second frame shows a three-hour interval starting 2.5 hours before the […]

Chandra X-Ray Observatory Reveals 'Black Hole Bonanza' in Andromeda Galaxy

Data from Chandra’s X-ray Observatory has led astronomers to unveil 26 black holes in the Milky Way’s neighbor, the Andromeda Galaxy. This is the largest number of black hole candidates found in a galaxy outside our own. Image Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/R. Barnard, Z. Lee et al.; Optical: NOAO/AURA/NSF/REU Program/B. Schoening, V. Harvey and Descubre […]

NASA's Voyager 1 Spacecraft Approaching Interstellar Space, 11 Billion Miles From Home

Artist's concept of Voyager 1 cruising the cosmos, farther from home than any man-made object has ever gone. Image Credit: NASA

Artist's concept of Voyager 1 cruising the cosmos, farther from home than any man-made object has ever gone. Image Credit: NASA

Voyager 1 is continuing to push through the outer edge of our known solar system in what is arguably one of the greatest adventures in the history of mankind. The spacecraft has travelled farther than […]