Space Shuttle Discovery heads home after final mission

When launched in 1984, Discovery was top notch; it was the best available around, and only the third operational orbiter; now, after 3 flights, over five thousand orbits and no less than 365 days spent in space, during which it traveled 150 million miles Discovery left the International Space Station (ISS) for the last time; it is still, for a

NASA slams alien life claims

Two days ago, the whole world was teeming with excitement, after some NASA researchers reported finding traces of alien life in meteorites; now, even their employer distances itself from them, and the whole scientific world seems to frown upon this work. However, in what is a very unusual move, NASA has denied any involvement with the paper, and even the

NASA satellite crashes deal serious blow to geoscience efforts

NASA is going through a whole lot during period: discussions about budget cuts, problems with launches, even with Hubble, and many, many more smaller or bigger problems are denting one of the finest organizations in the world. But a pair of costly satellite crashes mean dealt an even more severe blow to the space agency, especially to the earth science

US Space Plane is in orbit

Whenever Boeing and NASA team up, you can bet your sweet lasers something wicked is going to happen; actually, the first logical thing that would come to mind is a space plane – and this is what they did. The US X-37B is now in orbit, after a successful launch that took place without any incidents whatsoever. The orbital test

Comet flyby produces “stunning pictures”

After six years of loneliness, this Valentine’s day was the charm for one of the veteran comet-chasing spacecrafts. As Stardust briefly met with the comet nicknamed Tempel 1, the spacecraft took dozens of pictures of the comet’s icy surface; but this was no random encounter – the purpose of it was to see how a comet’s surface changes when it

NASA rejects Russian report: Apophis asteroid extremely unlikely to hit earth

In 2004, NASA researchers identified the Apophis asteroid and after some quick calculations they states there is a chance the asteroid will hit our homey planet in 2029. A few observations and some other calculations later, they explained that that chance is extremely small for 2029, as well as other years to come. However, reports from Russia claim that the

‘2012’ – most absurd science fiction movie ever

I’m gonna be honest with you – I didn’t see ‘2012’; honestly, I tried to. I started watching it two times, but it was just too stupid – and not the kind of funny stupid, the kind that just takes all the pleasure of watching (if you have a slight idea about what they’re saying in there). A number of

Japanese probe returns home with asteroid dust

JAXA, the Japanese space agency is becoming more and more active these days, as Japanese researchers are getting involved in more and more ambitious projects. Recently, a probe they sent out returned home with grains of dust gathered from an asteroid, a feat without precedent in history. The finding could provide valuable insight into the early history of our solar

TD54 Asteroid Collision Causes Atom Bomb-like Effects

Tuesday at 6:51 a.m. EDT (1051 GMT) a small asteroid dubbed TD54 passed the Earth dangerously close, above a section of Southeast Asia by Singapore, being at its closest 28,000 miles from our blue planet. The asteroid, 2010 TD54 was first discovered on October 9th, by scientists in Arizona at a NASA-sponsored lab. A few days after being spotted, the

Ancient Galaxies Really Sucked (Gas, That Is)

When early galaxies formed, there was a surprisingly high rate of new stars being formed, which was explained by major galactic collisions; however, recent evidence suggests that in fact the answer is much simpler, and not nearly as violent. Astronomers using the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile have observed three ancient galaxies with “patches of star formation”

Amazing NASA pic shows how galaxies collide

I gotta say, this is one of the most beautiful pictures I’ve seen all year ! This amazing image released by NASA shows a collision betweet two galaxies that began 100 million years ago (when dinosaurs were still kings) and is still happening today. The bright sources you see are in fact produced by huge amounts of material that falls

A solar tsunami set to generate celestial show tonight

A huge plasma eruption that took place on the Sun has caused a “solar tsunami” of ionized atoms that are on a course for our planet on Tuesday night. Nothing to be too alarmed here, except for the disruption of some satellites. It will however generate quite a show, a rare and unpredictable one too. “It’s the first major Earth-directed

140 Earth-like planets discovered in the Milky Way by Kepler

Last week at the latest TEDGlobal conference in Oxford, astronomer Dimitar Sassilov, professor of astronomy at Harvard University and a distinguished member of the Kepler space telescope science team, unveiled some incredible results gathered by our eyes and ears in the galaxy. Kepler’s most recent reported downloaded conferred some incredible statistics, among which most importantly the discovery of: 706 potential new planets and

Amazing Hubble capture of the NGC 3603 nebula

The above photo was captured by the Hubble Space Telescope around mid last year, proving excellent practice for Hubble’s newly installed Wide Field Camera 3. Captioned is the by now famous  NGC 3603 nebula, located in the Carina spiral arm – it’s by far one of the most spectacular star forming regions in the Milky Way. Scientist at first, soon

Japan plans a Moon base by 2020, built by the robots, for the robots

While America seems to have delayed it’s Moon base ambitions, Japan seems to have no such plans; according to their own statements, they have absolutely no intention of letting perfectly good lunar lands go to waste. An ambitious plan of (just?) $2.2 billion investments is in the works at JAXA (Japan’s space agency), with the goal of landing humanoid robots

NASA Picture of the oil spill

I’m gonna call ‘no comment’ on this one. Full pic here.

Obama sets Mars goal for America in less than 20 years

Barack Obama came out and said that it should be possible for NASA to send astronauts to Mars and bring them back safely by the mid 2030s. The US president said this while explaining the details of his plans with the US space agency at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Mister Obama has set quite some high goals for

Dark flow leads researchers to exotic conclusion

Two years ago, researchers reported the strange movement of hundreds of galaxy clusters moving in the same direction at about 3.6 million kilometers per hour. Current spatial movement models can’t explain this in any way, so at the time, they launched a strange hypothesis: clusters are being tugged by the gravity of something outside our universe. Just take a minute

NASA Mars Rover gets smarter as it ages

NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity is already in its 7th year on Mars, and over the years it provided some quite useful information; researchers from NASA have been constantly working on ways to improve and optimize it by constantly uploading new software. Such is the case with the software they applied this winter, which makes it able to make its

NASA is stunned to find life beneath 183 meters of Antarctic ice

At nearly 200 meters below the ice, there is no light, the temperature is way below 0 degrees, and scientists were expecting to find nothing more than a handful of microbes – and for good reason. So it’s easy to understand why they were so surprised to find not a single (evolved) life form, but actually two such creatures. The