NASA

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Asteroid Could Come Within 11K Miles of Earth Next Month

But NASA says there's no reason to panic

(Newser) - An asteroid could pass very close—cosmically speaking—to the Earth next month. Asteroid 2013 TX68 is scheduled to pass us by on March 5, coming as close as 11,000 miles (or a little more than the distance between Seattle and South Africa), CBS News reports. However it could... More »

Massive Landfill Fire in India Can Be Seen From Space

NASA pic shows how bad toxic Mumbai blaze really is

(Newser) - Residents in Mumbai are posting smog-filled photos on Twitter and dozens of schools have shut down as a fire in the Indian city's largest landfill continues to burn. In fact, the blaze (which Mashable calls a "mystery fire") in the 326-acre Deonar landfill is so big that... More »

The Challenger Disaster: The Day in Pictures

Looking back on the 30th anniversary of the space shuttle's explosion

(Newser) - Thirty years ago, the space shuttle Challenger exploded after liftoff, killing all seven people onboard—including high-school teacher Christa McAuliffe. The 25th flight for NASA's space shuttle program was to have studied Halley's Comet and deployed two satellites, Discovery News reports; McAuliffe was to have taught science lessons... More »

A Poem Helped Reagan Explain Challenger Disaster

Challenger exploded 30 years ago Thursday

(Newser) - Thursday is the 30th anniversary of the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger, and there's plenty of interesting coverage of the tragedy that killed all seven aboard, including teacher Christa McAuliffe. Some highlights:
  • The Washington Post looks back on how Ronald Reagan scrapped plans to deliver his State of
... More »

2015 Was Hottest Year on Record— by a Longshot

The data is in, not looking good for climate change

(Newser) - Last year was not just the hottest year since reporting started in 1880—it was the hottest year by a long shot, based on NASA and NOAA data released Wednesday. The average global temperature in 2015 "shattered the previous mark set in 2014 by 0.23 degrees Fahrenheit,"... More »

Scientists Coax First Flower to Bloom in Outer Space

A month ago the zero-gravity zinnia plants weren't looking so good

(Newser) - Back in 2014, through a NASA project called Veggie, scientists began to grow plants in space—red romaine lettuce, to be specific. It took two attempts to get it right, though even the setbacks provided valuable data for the scientists back at home. So astronaut Scott Kelly's ability to... More »

No, Those Aren't Snails on Pluto

They're dirty icebergs, say NASA scientists

(Newser) - Bad news for future residents of Pluto with a fondness for escargot: The planet is not, in fact, covered with giant snails—despite images beamed back to Earth from the New Horizons probe that bear a weird resemblance to the creatures. The images, published by NASA, show oddly-shaped objects in... More »

El Nino Is Looking Scarily Like 1997's El Nino

That's not good

(Newser) - The El Nino weather system of 1997-98 was so bad that descriptions of it sound like something out of a Ben Affleck disaster movie: Australia turned into a slow cooker, California and Peru were pummeled with rain, and there were rampant fires in Indonesia; around 23,000 people perished from... More »

Video Reveals How Fast We've Amassed Space Junk

In just 60 years, Earth has become surrounded by 500K pieces of debris

(Newser) - More than 500,000 known objects are orbiting planet Earth, and around 20,000 of them are at least as big as a softball, reports NASA . Now a University College London professor has used data from space-track.org to create a video to help us visualize how quickly that space... More »

We're Getting a Christmas Eve Asteroid

There's no danger of Asteroid 163899-Santa collision

(Newser) - After Halloween's " zombie comet ," there will be another celestial visitor on Christmas Eve, and Asteroid 163899 is about as festive as a space rock can get, which is not at all. The object—also known as 2003 SD220—will be at its closest on Dec. 24, when... More »

'Alien Megastructure' May Be Comet Family

But it's still a very strange star, astronomers say

(Newser) - KIC 8462852 is an odd and fascinating star, astronomers say—but it probably isn't host to an "alien megastructure," as some researchers suggested as a longshot possibility when the star and its highly unusual dimming pattern first came to attention. Instead, Iowa State University researchers who studied... More »

Controversial Study Finds Antarctica Is Actually Gaining Ice

But that doesn't mean global warming isn't still a huge problem

(Newser) - A recent NASA study has come to a shocking conclusion that contradicts a host of other studies, multitudes of climate scientists, the UN, and even other scientists at NASA: Antarctica is actually gaining more ice than it's losing, despite global warming. How's that possible? Live Science reports the... More »

The Sun Is Obliterating Mars' Atmosphere

Solar storms hit with energy of 'one large nuclear weapon per hour'

(Newser) - Scientists might finally have an explanation for how Mars went from an Earth-like, potentially life-sustaining planet to a cold ball of rock barely capable of keeping a single Matt Damon alive . Discovery reports the sun has been "blasting away" the planet's once-thick atmosphere for the past few billion... More »

8 Cool Facts on Big Day for International Space Station

It's the 15th anniversary of continuous residency at the ISS

(Newser) - Monday marks the 15th anniversary of continuous residency at the International Space Station, the AP reports. The station was launched in 1998, the BBC reports, and first permanent crew moved in on Nov. 2, 2000. It's planned to be decommissioned in 2020. Eight fun ISS facts to celebrate the... More »

He's College Grad, NASA Consultant, Pilot, Author. He's 17

Moshe Kai Cavalin isn't exactly sitting around

(Newser) - Moshe Kai Cavalin has two college degrees, but he's too young to vote. He flies airplanes, but he's too young to drive a car alone. Life is filled with contrasts for the 17-year-old from San Gabriel, Calif., who has dashed by major milestones as his age seems to... More »

'Halloween' Space Rock Is a Dead Comet

Approaching 'space zombie' looks like a skull

(Newser) - The "Halloween asteroid" set to make its closest approach to Earth today has turned out to be something spookier: a dead comet. Scientist say object 2015 TB145 looked like an asteroid when it was first spotted a few weeks ago. but closer inspection suggests that it is a comet... More »

Alabama Junkyard Scraps Important Piece of NASA History

50-year-old lunar rover prototype was spotted in tiny town

(Newser) - Some deep document diving by Motherboard brings us this story of a massive and massively historical NASA lunar rover prototype and the Alabama junkyard that destroyed it for some reason. Motherboard reports a US Air Force historian was visiting his mother in Blountsville, Alabama—population 1,700—when he spotted... More »

Mystery Space Junk to Strike Earth on Friday the 13th

NASA is tracking its descent

(Newser) - An unknown object is falling from the sky—WTF?? Actually, astronomers refer to it as WT1190F and say it's destined to strike Earth on Friday the 13th next month, CBS San Francisco reports. Bill Gray, an expert at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, Calif., says the unknown... More »

Scott Kelly Sets US Record for Most Days in Space

Friday was his 383rd day outside of Earth's atmosphere

(Newser) - In what should probably be long enough to apply for permanent residence status, astronaut Scott Kelly set a US record for most days spent in space Friday, his 383rd day of living outside the Earth's atmosphere, USA Today reports. By the time he returns from his current mission, he'... More »

NASA: Here's How We'll Get Humans on Mars by 2030s

It involves 3 phases, the first of which is already underway

(Newser) - NASA doesn't just have a vague vision of putting humans on Mars by the 2030s: It now has a detailed plan to make it happen. In a report released last week, called "NASA's Journey to Mars," the space agency reveals a three-step plan, which includes more... More »

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