space

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Paul Allen's Massive Space Project Is 76% Done

Microsoft co-founder is building the world's biggest plane

(Newser) - Paul Allen, billionaire earthling and co-founder of Microsoft, has long been obsessed with space, and his pet project Stratolaunch Systems is beginning to bear fruit. The Washington Post reports that Stratolaunch, shaping up to be the world's largest airplane, is now 76% assembled—no small accomplishment given the sheer... More »

A 'Biscuit-Sized' Rock May Clear Up a Space Mystery

In a Swedish quarry, scientists find an 'extinct' meteorite

(Newser) - The Earth has just given up a very alien secret: Scientists are reporting in Nature Communications that a rock found in a limestone quarry in Sweden is the first of its kind to have been discovered on our planet, a "biscuit-sized" remnant of a space rock they believe collided... More »

Mercury to Make Rare Trip Across the Sun

It happens about 13 times per century

(Newser) - What one astronomer calls a "rare astronomical phenomenon" will play out on Monday. For more than seven hours beginning at 7:12am ET, Mercury will appear as a tiny black dot passing directly in front of the sun, reports National Geographic . Viewers across much of the globe, including North... More »

Study: Saturn's Rings, Moons Are Younger Than Dinosaurs

And that's surprisingly young

(Newser) - Scientists may have overestimated how old Saturn's rings and moons are—by more than 4 billion years. In fact, the planet's rings and many of its 62 moons likely didn't form until dinosaurs were around to see it happen, Discovery reports. Researchers from the SETI Institute measured... More »

Grandpa to Break Scott Kelly's Space Record

Jeff Williams will have spent 534 days in space by September

(Newser) - It's a good thing Scott Kelly nabbed two records during his year in space because one will soon be broken. NASA astronaut Jeff Williams—who is rocketing into space on Friday with Russian cosmonauts Alexey Ovchinin and Oleg Skripochka—will become America's most experienced space traveler during a... More »

Mysterious Repeating Signals Are Arriving From Deep Space

'Fast radio bursts' are now even more baffling to astronomers

(Newser) - Researchers just announced the discovery of radio signals from beyond our galaxy that are behaving in strange ways. Fast radio bursts—or FRBs—are very rare, very quick blasts of radio waves originating billions of light years away, Popular Science explains. It's unclear where exactly in the universe they'... More »

NASA Scientist: I Can Get Humans to Mars in a Month

'No known reason why we cannot do this'

(Newser) - A century ago, the first transatlantic flight took about 23 days. Soon, we could reach Mars in about as long. The key: perfecting laser technology. NASA scientist Philip Lubin says that by swapping out the current fuel-based rocket propulsion system with one relying on photons would significantly boost our space... More »

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 »

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 »

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 »

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 »

Pluto Has a Blue Sky, Like Ours

Yup, it's blue, but Pluto's frozen water might be red

(Newser) - New Horizons' flyby of Pluto this summer taught us a lot about the dwarf planet, including that it's 1,597 miles across and has a mountain range the size of the Rockies . But new surprises are emerging as data continues to be beamed back from 3.1 billion miles... More »

Meet the Woman Protecting Mars From Earth Invaders

Curiosity is one dirty rover

(Newser) - Dr. Catharine Conley's job is to make sure that if we ever discover life on Mars, it's actually Martian and not our own dirty fingerprints. “If we’re going to look for life on Mars, it would be really kind of lame to bring Earth life and... More »

See the Moon Missions Like Never Before

NASA's Project Apollo Archive shares thousands of high-res photos

(Newser) - We bet we can guess how anyone not entirely convinced that the US put a man on the moon will be spending their day. Kipp Teague has just updated NASA's Project Apollo Archive's Flickr account with 8,400 unprocessed, high-res, never-before-seen photos taken during the Apollo missions from... More »

Scientists to See If They Can Save Earth From Asteroid

Mission in 2022 will be a test run on preventing collision

(Newser) - Come 2022, scientists will attempt to save all of humanity from an asteroid. Calm down, it's just a trial run. The joint US-European AIDA—that's Asteroid Deflection and Assessment—mission intends to crash a probe into a 525-foot-wide asteroid known as Didymoon to see if the impact will... More »

How 1st Woman in Space Nearly Never Returned

Her spacecraft was programmed to go up but not come down

(Newser) - Fifty-two years after becoming the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova reflected on her historic trip and how she very nearly never returned. When the Soviet Union launched Vostok 6 in 1963, cosmonaut Tereshkova exclaimed, "Hey sky, take off your hat, I'm on my way!" the BBC... More »

6 Humans Step Into One-Year Isolation Dome

It's part of NASA's preparation to send humans to Mars

(Newser) - As NASA prepares to send a crew to Mars sometime in the 2030s, they've just shut six people inside an isolation dome in Hawaii for a year—the longest such experiment in the US, reports AFP . It's part of a larger look at travel logistics in a program... More »

Hubble Spots 'Butterfly' 2K Light-Years Away

It's also known as the Twin Jet Nebula, and it's pretty

(Newser) - It's a bird, it's a plane, it's ... a space butterfly? That's essentially what the Hubble Space Telescope has captured in a new image of the Twin Jet Nebula, a shimmering planetary nebula that strongly resembles a winged insect, reports CNET . What you're actually seeing in... More »

You Can Spend Eternity on the Moon ... for $12K

Company plans to start sending up capsules with ashes

(Newser) - We've entered the age of a new space race, only this time it's between companies hoping to send the cremated remains of your loved ones to the moon, where they'll spend eternity with Buzz Aldrin's footprints and that flag from MTV. This week, San Francisco-based Elysium... More »

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