Jet Propulsion Laboratory

11 Stories

'Mystery Light' Spotted in Mars Photo

NASA says blip was caused by cosmic rays

(Newser) - Is there life on Mars—and has it left its lights on? A strange blip of light in a photo snapped April 3 by NASA's Curiosity rover has excited UFO enthusiasts, the Houston Chronicle reports. While experts suspect a pixel problem, some believe the light shining upward signals Martians.... More »

NASA So Cool, It Has Own LMFAO Spoof

Of course, the coolest kids work for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory

(Newser) - They sport mohawks. President Obama called them cool . And now they're the subject of an MTV-worthy video. The polo-shirted crew at California's Jet Propulsion Laboratory found quick fame after Curiosity's victorious landing, following its famed seven minutes of terror on Aug. 5, in part "because they... More »

Mars Rover Sends Back First Video

Curiosity captures landing, images of Martian surface

(Newser) - NASA has released a rover's-eye view of Curiosity's nail-biting landing on Mars yesterday. The video, which captures a minute of what engineers described as "seven minutes of terror," begins as the rover's heat shield falls away, and ends with dust being kicked up as Curiosity... More »

Greenland, Antarctic Ice Melting Faster Than Expected

Ice sheets could send sea level up 6 inches by 2050

(Newser) - The ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica are melting significantly faster than previously estimated, according to a new international report led by scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Unless the trend is reversed, the melting ice sheets will push global sea levels up six inches by 2050, the scientists... More »

Rocket Scientists See Red Flag in Background Checks

Contentious case likely to advance to Supreme Court

(Newser) - A case brought by workers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory could help determine a government standard for employee privacy. The rocket scientists have won a district court ruling against a Bush-era homeland security initiative that instituted background checks for all employees. The employees consider the checks not just intrusive... More »

NASA Rover on Strike

Mars Spirit fails to report for work

(Newser) - NASA engineers are perplexed by a rebellious streak that has developed in its Martian roving robot, Spirit. It was expected to last just 90 days when it landed on Mars five years ago, but the robot has continued to send back data. This past weekend, however, Spirit failed to report... More »

Mars Through a Microscope

Phoenix takes unprecedented Mars shots

(Newser) - The Phoenix Mars Lander has taken the first high-resolution images of another planet's dirt and sand in its continued quest for signs of life in the planet's polar region. The microscopic particles were kicked up when the lander touched down and collected  on a slide, Reuters reports. Scientists note that... More »

Phoenix Samples Martian Dirt

Robotic arm tested prior to search for life

(Newser) - The Phoenix Mars Lander grabbed a small sample of the fine soil of the planet's polar region yesterday. It was only a test "dig and dump"—using the spacecraft's 8-foot-long robotic arm—but paves the way for retrieving and analyzing samples of Martian soil later this week, reports... More »

7 Minutes of Danger in Mars Quest

Probe makes risky landing Sunday in hunt for water

(Newser) - The latest NASA mission searching for signs of life on Mars comes to a heart-pounding climax Sunday as the Phoenix Lander attempts to touch down at the red planet's pole in a hunt for water. The lander must perform complex maneuvers in which the whole mission is at risk for... More »

Laws of Physics May Need an Overhaul

Scientists detect gravity-defying behavior of spacecrafts

(Newser) - The laws of physics just might be broken. Scientists have detected gravity-defying behavior from spacecrafts flung around the Earth, the Economist reports. Five different spacecrafts picked up speed at a pace deviating,ever so slightly, from the laws created by Newton and Einstein. After laborious calculations, astronomers have created a... More »

Antarctica Speeds Into Trouble

Disturbing new discovery indicates climate change is accelerating

(Newser) - Parts of Antarctica thought to be unaffected by global warming are in fact melting as the temperature of the oceans rises, and in parts of the continent, annual ice loss has jumped 140% in the past decade, new research shows. Satellite mapping shows change on a previously unimagined scale, reports... More »

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