AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch MAVEN on a Atlas V 401 rocket from Cape Canaveral AFB, FL
scheduled for:
18 Nov 13 18:28:00 GMT
18 Nov 13 13:28:00 EST

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Plate Tectonics May Increase Chances for Life on Europa

Europa, with its subsurface ocean, and now evidence for plate tectonics, is a primary goal of exploration in the search for alien life. Processed image copyright: Ted Stryk. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Ted Stryk

Jupiter’s moon Europa is a fascinating little world, but particularly so for one reason: water. It’s deep alien ocean underneath the surface [...]

Rainfall on Titan May Create Propane Aquifers, Study Suggests

Illustration of a cross-section of Titan’s surface and near-subsurface, showing the surface lakes/seas, underground aquifers, clathrate layers, and icy crust. Image Credit: ESA/ATG medialab

Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, is a very alien yet eerily Earth-like world, with rain, rivers, lakes, and seas; seen from above, the landscape has a familiar look to it. But [...]

Titan's Hidden Ocean Might Be as Salty as the Dead Sea

Illustration of what Titan’s interior is thought to look like, with a rigid ice shell above the salty water ocean below. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Saturn’s moon Titan is known for its methane seas, lakes, and rivers; surprisingly Earth-like in appearance yet distinctly alien at the same time. But there is also evidence for another [...]

Wolf V. Vishniac, The First Human to Walk on Mars

An image from one of the first interplanetary explorers, the Viking 2 lander. Dr. Wolf Vishniac was one of Viking’s team members, and he pioneered the search for life in alien worlds. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

He may not be a household name, but remember the name of Dr. Wolf V. Vishniac. A microbiologist by [...]

Hubble Discovers Two Potential KBO Targets for NASA's New Horizons Spacecraft, Follows Up With Additional Search

Discovery images of the two Kuiper Belt Objects named 1110113Y and 0720090F respectively, taken with NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope. The image at left shows the first KBO at an estimated distance of approximately 4 billion miles from Earth. Its position noticeably shifts between exposures taken approximately 10 minutes apart. The image at right shows [...]

ESA's Rosetta Spacecraft Closes In on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, Detects Huge Amounts of Water Outgassing

ESA’s Rosetta spacecraft, which is presently en route to the comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko, has detected that the comet’s nucleus outgasses huge amounts of water vapor each second, despite its current distance of approximately 3.7 Astronomical Units from the Sun. Image Credit: ESA

Being part of a natural thermoregulation process for all mammals, perspiration is the [...]

The Continuing Saga of Planet X: Could More Massive Planets Hide Beyond Pluto?

An artist’s impression of Eris, the most massive dwarf planet known to date, with an aphelion of 97 AU from the Sun. Could bigger Super-Earth-type planets be orbiting even farther out? Image Credit: ESO/L. Calçada and Nick Risinger

 

Just like the proverbial cat with nine lives, the notion of an unseen planet orbiting [...]

Buried in the Deep: Could Water Ice Deposits on the Moon Generate Their Own Organic Compounds?

A high-definition image of the Earth rising above the Moon’s south pole, taken from Japan’s Kaguya lunar orbiter in 2007. Permanently shadowed craters near the lunar polar regions have been found to harbor water ice deposits and organic compounds. Could these organics be composed in-situ inside the bottoms of these craters? Image Credit: JAXA

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Cassini Image May Reveal Historic Birth of Icy Saturn Moon

From NASA/JPL: “The disturbance visible at the outer edge of Saturn’s A ring in this image from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft could be caused by an object replaying the birth process of icy moons.” Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

The Cassini spacecraft, a flagship-class mission that is a cooperative project between NASA, the European Space [...]

One Step at a Time: Construction of the James Webb Space Telescope Steadily Going Forward

Segments of the James Webb Space Telescope’s primary mirror, while undergoing cryogenic testing. Image: Ball Aerospace

In what constitutes important and exciting news for space science and astrophysics, the final segments of the primary mirror for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) have been delivered to NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.

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