One of Saturn’s ring has played tricks on astronomers for years

Saturn-rings

One of Saturn’s ring, which is very opaque and bright seems to have played an optical illusions all along. It is in fact much lighter than previously though — as little as a seventh of the mass it appears to have.

NASA finds vast quantities of frozen water on Pluto

NASA.

New data provided by the New Horizons mission showed that water ice on Pluto is much more common than we thought.

Observing Alien Armageddon could be our first sign of advanced civilizations in space.

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It may be possible to observe the presence of an advanced alien civilization by the effects produced if that civilization were to self-destruct through nuclear war, biological warfare, nanotechnological annihilation, or stellar pollution. Each case would generate unique detectable signs that could be identified by earth-based telescopes.

China Rover Releases HD Pictures of the Moon

Chinese Academy of Sciences / China National Space Administration / The Science and Application Center for Moon and Deepspace Exploration / Emily Lakdawalla

China’s National Space Administration released a trove of images from their lunar rover and they’re spectacular. We’re talking hundreds of tantalizing, HD and never-before-seen images of the Moon! You can set up an account on China’s Science and Application Center for Moon and Deepspace Exploration website and have a look for yourself, view and download all the pictures you like – but

This material can heat to 2200 F, but it’s safe to hold in your bare hands

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Designing an orbiter that is able to endure the brutal -250 F in the outer stretches of space, as well as the bewildering 3000 F during the reentry is a ridiculously challenging task.

Europe launches laser-equipped satellite to transmit data – 100 times faster than the internet

EDRS will eventually feature several relay satellites in orbit, gathering data and speeding it to the ground. Image via ESA.

Europe’s laser communication network has taken off!

Extreme Antarctic fungi survives in Martian habitat, as well as space

Section of rock coloniszed by cryptoendolithic microorganisms and the Cryomyces fungi in quartz crystals under an electron microscope. Credit: S. Onofri et al. Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2016-01-antarctic-fungi-survive-martian-conditions.html#jCp

Researchers at European Space Agency (ESA) collected fungi that live in one of the harshest places on Earth — McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica — then shipped some to the ISS. Here, populations were subjected to both a Martian environment and directly exposed to space. In both situations, fungi survived after 18 months though those breeding in the Martian environment proved to be far better adapted. Lichen were also tested under the same circumstances. These too survived, which gives hope that there might be a chance for life on Mars to exist.

Martian settlers might have serious problems sleeping

mars sleeping

Considering how inhospitable Mars is, given there’s no air, -55C temperatures, radiation and all, you might think the quality of sleep on Mars is our last concern. A new study suggests that a permanent jet lag on Mars might come with some serious health risks, so maybe we should take this more seriously.

Lonely planet is actually part of the largest planetary system in the Milky Way

Artist impression of 2MASS J2126. Credit: Neil Cook, University of Hertfordshire

Astronomers find the parent of an orphan planet. The finding makes the solar system the biggest in the galaxy.

Hubble’s ‘heir’ is coming together

The telescope will consist of 18 mirror segments when it's completed. Each segment can be independently adjusted to bring the starlight into focus.
David Higginbotham/Emmett Given/MSFC/NASA

NASA is very close to reaching a milestone in the construction of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), Hubble’s successor that will be launched in 2018.