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NASA Opens Moon Samples Frozen for 50 Years

Apollo 17 samples could have valuable lessons for Artemis missions

(Newser) - As NASA prepares for the Artemis moon missions, its scientists have cracked open lunar samples frozen since the Apollo 17 mission almost 50 years ago. The samples collected during the agency's last crewed moon mission were recently brought to the Goddard Space Flight Facility in Maryland from the Johnson...

NASA: Fireball Over South Was 10 Times Brighter Than Moon

Chunk of asteroid exploded over Louisiana

(Newser) - NASA has confirmed that a fireball seen over three Southern states this week was a piece of an asteroid around a foot across that exploded 34 miles above a swampy area in Louisiana. The agency says around 30 people in Mississippi, Arkansas, and Louisiana reported sightings. The meteor, which weighed...

Ancient Text Reveals Earliest Known Aurora Reference

Finding shows that Earth's magnetic pole has shifted since ancient times

(Newser) - Researchers may have discovered the earliest known record of an aurora. The reference to a "five-colored light" in the northern sky is nestled in the scrolls of the ancient Bamboo Annals, a chronicle of Chinese history written in the 4th century BCE. The event probably occurred around 1000 BCE...

NASA Reveals Hologram Doctors Visited Space Station

They were first humans 'holoported' to space

(Newser) - While the words "Beam up Schmiddy" probably weren't spoken, NASA flight surgeon Dr. Josef Schmid did give a Vulcan salute as he appeared on the International Space Station through a process called "holoporting." NASA recently disclosed that in October, Schmid and other team members became the...

Uranus Tops Scientists' Space 'Wish List'
Scientists Urge

Scientists Urge NASA to Explore Uranus

It tops the 'wish list' of an influential panel

(Newser) - An influential panel of scientists says NASA should put exploration of Uranus at the top of its to-do list. The US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS) made the recommendation in its report on "the next decade of planetary science and astrobiology." The only visit thus...

Scientists Confirm What's at Heart of This Comet Is Huge

Nucleus of C/2014 UN271 is around 80 miles across and 'blacker than coal'

(Newser) - The biggest comet nucleus ever detected is wider than New Jersey and is hurtling through space at 22,000mph, NASA says. Observations from the Hubble Space Telescope have confirmed that the nucleus of Comet C/2014 UN271 (Bernardinelli-Bernstein) is 50 times larger than what is at the heart of most comets,...

At Auction: Moon Dust Collected by Neil Armstrong

It'll be quite a payday for Illinois collector Nancy Lee Carlson

(Newser) - A rare piece—or rather pieces—of space history are about to go to the highest bidder. Five samples of moon dust collected by Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, during the 1969 Apollo 11 mission will be sold at a Bonhams auction on Wednesday. Thought...

NASA Designs New Message for Aliens
NASA Designs New
Message for Aliens

NASA Designs New Message for Aliens

'Beacon in the Galaxy' proposal builds on previous efforts, with some important updates

(Newser) - The Arecibo message—beamed via interstellar radio in 1974 from its namesake telescope—was “humanity’s first attempt to send out a missive capable of being understood by extraterrestrial intelligence,” per Scientific American, which reports on efforts to develop a sequel, nicknamed “Beacon in the Galaxy.”...

Russia: Sanctions Imperil Future of Space Station

US, other nations' agencies ignored a deadline for lifting penalties

(Newser) - The head of Russia's space program said Saturday that the future of the International Space Station hangs in the balance after the US, the European Union, and Canadian space agencies missed a deadline to meet Russian demands for lifting sanctions on Russian enterprises and hardware. Dmitry Rogozin, the head...

He Discovered an Asteroid—Then Its Earth-Bound Path
He Discovered an
Asteroid—Then Its
Earth-Bound Path
in case you missed it

He Discovered an Asteroid—Then Its Earth-Bound Path

It soon after struck Earth's atmosphere over Norwegian sea, as NASA system predicted

(Newser) - An asteroid was spotted for the first time Friday only about two hours before it entered into Earth's atmosphere. NASA's early warning system that detects near-Earth objects was put to the test after astronomer Krisztián Sarneczky at the Piszkésteto Observatory in northern Hungary notified the Minor...

Cosmonauts Reach Space Station After Russian Warning

NASA administrator plays down comment about supplying rocket engines

(Newser) - A trio of Russian cosmonauts arrived at the International Space Station on Friday, the first new faces in space since the start of the Russian war in Ukraine. Russian space corporation Roscosmos cosmonauts Oleg Artemyev, Denis Matveyev and Sergey Korsakov blasted off successfully from the Russia-leased Baikonur launch facility in...

NASA Rolls Out 'World's Most Powerful Rocket'

Space Launch System is first moon-bound rocket at launch pad since 1972

(Newser) - NASA says its Space Launch System is the most powerful rocket ever built and will one day send humans into deep space. But its first journey was a slow one: The massive rocket rolled out of the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center on top of...

Gas May Hide in 50-Year-Old Moon Sample

Sample 73001, vacuum-sealed in 1972, is now being opened

(Newser) - The last time astronauts set foot on the moon, in 1972, they hammered two 1.5-by-14-inch tubes into the lunar surface, which were then retrieved along with the soil inside. Sample 73002 was brought back to Earth in an unsealed container, which was opened in 2019. But sample 73001 was...

For NASA's Space Telescope, 'a Real Wow Moment'

James Webb Space Telescope captures its first starlight, plus a selfie

(Newser) - NASA's new space telescope has captured its first starlight and even taken a selfie of its giant gold mirror. All 18 segments of the primary mirror on the James Webb Space Telescope seem to be working properly one and a half months into the mission, officials said Friday, per...

International Space Station's Final Resting Place: Point Nemo

NASA releases updated transition plan

(Newser) - NASA on Tuesday provided an updated International Space Station transition plan —including what will happen when deorbit occurs in 2031. The report states that "based on the ISS structural health analysis performed to date, there is high confidence that ISS life can be further extended through 2030,"...

NASA Crew Has Begun Simulated Mars Trip
Crew Simulates
Stress of Mars Trip

Crew Simulates Stress of Mars Trip

Four volunteers are sealed in a structure at Johnson Space Center

(Newser) - A NASA crew has begun a 45-day trip to Mars, all in a habitat on the ground at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. A volunteer crew of four launched the simulated journey Friday, CNN reports, in an effort to learn about the effects of isolation and confinement during missions....

'We’re One Step Closer to Uncovering the Mysteries of the Universe'

James Webb Space Telescope reaches final orbit

(Newser) - "We're one step closer to uncovering the mysteries of the universe," a jubilant NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said Monday after the James Webb Space Telescope reached its final orbit. "And I can’t wait to see Webb’s first new views of the universe this summer!...

Research Counters 1996 Report on Evidence of Past Life on Mars

Scientists had doubted first claims about meteorite after 1984 discovery

(Newser) - A 4 billion-year-old meteorite from Mars that caused a splash on Earth decades ago contains no evidence of ancient, primitive Martian life after all, scientists reported Thursday. In 1996, a NASA-led team announced that organic compounds in the rock appeared to have been left by living creatures. Other scientists were...

Trend Holds on Warming Planet
Trend Holds
on Warming Planet

Trend Holds on Warming Planet

2021 was the 6th hottest year on record, while the past 8 set a mark

(Newser) - Earth simmered to the sixth-hottest year on record in 2021, according to several newly released temperature measurements. And scientists say the exceptionally hot year is part of a long-term warming trend that shows hints of accelerating, the AP reports. Two US science agencies—NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric...

Saturday Is Christmas for NASA in Another Way, Too
Most Powerful Telescope
in the World Lifts Off

Most Powerful Telescope in the World Lifts Off

The James Webb Space Telescope, successor to the Hubble, launches aboard rocket

(Newser) - Updated: The world's most powerful telescope is on its way to the cosmos. A rocket lifted off Saturday morning with the James Webb Space Telescope, reports the AP . NASA is collaborating with the European and Canadian space agencies on the telescope, and the launch took place from French Guiana....

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