Archiv: space exploration / observation / telescopes / astronomy


27.09.2020 - 15:59 [ Ansa.it ]

Italy, USA sign moon-exploration agreement

Italy and the United States on Friday signed a declaration of intent for exploration of the moon linked to the Artemis programme.
The deal was signed in Rome by Cabinet Secretary Riccardo Fraccaro in video link with NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.

15.09.2020 - 12:32 [ BBC ]

Venus clouds ‚might harbour life‘

(25.05.2004)

„Current theories suggest that Venus and the Earth may have started out alike. There might have been a lot of water on Venus and there might have been a lot of carbon dioxide on Earth,“ Professor Ingersoll explained.

But all that was to change. On Earth, life in the oceans took in carbon dioxide and turned it into limestone. On Venus, 30% closer to the Sun, any oceans boiled away and the water vapour added to the runaway greenhouse effect.

15.09.2020 - 11:57 [ Harold Morowitz and Carl Sagan / Nature.com ]

Life in the Clouds of Venus?

(16.09.1967)

WHILE the surface conditions of Venus make the hypothesis of life there implausible, the clouds of Venus are a different story altogether. As was pointed out some years ago, water, carbon dioxide and sunlight—the prerequisites for photosynthesis—are plentiful in the vicinity of the clouds. Since then, good additional evidence has been provided that the clouds are composed of ice crystals at their tops and it seems likely that there are water droplets toward their bottoms. Independent evidence for water vapour also exists5.

15.09.2020 - 11:56 [ ScienceDirect.com ]

Water vapor in the atmosphere of Venus

(December 1972)

Infrared spectra of Venus produced by a Fourier spectrometer flown aboard the NASA CV 990 jet aircraft were analyzed for water-vapor content by comparison with calculated model spectra. The reflecting layer model gave an abundance of 1.6 ± 0.4 μ of precipitable water for the two-way transmission of the Venus atmosphere. The scattering model resulted in a value of 0.25 ± 0.10 μ of water per scattering mean free path.

15.09.2020 - 11:53 [ New York Times ]

Life on Venus? Astronomers See a Signal in Its Clouds

(14.09.2020)

“This is an astonishing and ‘out of the blue’ finding,” said Sara Seager, a planetary scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an author of the papers (one published in Nature Astronomy and another submitted to the journal Astrobiology). “It will definitely fuel more research into the possibilities for life in Venus’s atmosphere.”

15.09.2020 - 11:31 [ Nature.com ]

Phosphine gas in the cloud decks of Venus

(14.09.2020)

Here we report the apparent presence of phosphine (PH3) gas in Venus’s atmosphere, where any phosphorus should be in oxidized forms. Single-line millimetre-waveband spectral detections (quality up to ~15σ) from the JCMT and ALMA telescopes have no other plausible identification.

24.08.2020 - 13:24 [ MIT Technology Review ]

The 5 best places to explore in the solar system—besides Mars

In studying Pluto, “we can get a sense of what goes on in the Kuiper belt, and how it’s able to produce these geologically active bodies that are so small and distant from the sun but still have enough internal energy to drive these processes,” says Karunatillake. Pluto could be a sign that just because another world is far away from the sun doesn’t mean it’s completely dead.

As with Ceres, however, there just hasn’t been enough time since the last mission to justify greenlighting a new one yet. We may need to wait another decade before NASA or another institution thinks it’s time to launch another spacecraft to Pluto.

24.08.2020 - 13:11 [ Phys.org ]

Dwarf planet Ceres is an ocean world: study

(10.08.2020)

Using infrared imaging, one team discovered the presence of the compound hydrohalite—a material common in sea ice but which until now had never been observed off of Earth.

24.08.2020 - 12:01 [ National Aeronautics and Space Administration ]

NASA Satellite’s Lone View of Betelgeuse Reveals More Strange Behavior

(13.08.2020)

STEREO’s measurements revealed that Betelgeuse is dimming again — an unexpected development so soon after its last dim period. Betelgeuse typically goes through brightness cycles lasting about 420 days, with the previous minimum in February 2020, meaning this dimming is happening unexpectedly early. These observations were reported by the science team via The Astronomer’s Telegram on July 28, 2020. This is an intriguing phenomenon that scientists will study with additional Earth-orbiting and ground-based observatories when Betelgeuse returns to the night sky in late August.

20.07.2020 - 13:25 [ Sloan Digital Sky Survey - SDSS.org ]

No need to Mind the Gap: Astrophysicists fill in 11 billion years of our universe’s expansion history

This map represents the combined effort of more than 20 years of mapping the Universe using the Sloan Foundation telescope. The cosmic history that has been revealed in this map shows that about six billion years ago, the expansion of the Universe began to accelerate, and has continued to get faster and faster ever since. This accelerated expansion seems to be due to a mysterious invisible component of the Universe called “dark energy,” consistent with Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity but extremely difficult to reconcile with our current understanding of particle physics.

20.07.2020 - 13:20 [ Blick.ch ]

Millionen Galaxien und Quasare analysiert: Forschende schaffen bisher grösste 3D-Karte des Universums

Im Projekt forschte das Team bis zu elf Milliarden Jahre zurück in die Vergangenheit. Dazu benutzten sie sogenannte Quasare – der aktive Kern einer Galaxie, deren supermassenreiches Schwarzes Loch in ihrem Zentrum durch die darin eingeschlossene Materie extrem hell wird.

Die Karte zeigt, dass sich die Expansion des Universums an einem bestimmten Punkt beschleunigt hat und seither anhält. Die Forschenden machen dafür dunkle Energie verantwortlich.

15.07.2020 - 16:55 [ Johan Hidding / Youtube ]

Large scale structure formation in the Universe simulated

Apr 2, 2009

This is a simulation of structure formation in the Universe using the adhesion approximation. The algorithm is described by Weinberg and Gunn in MNRAS in 1990

15.07.2020 - 16:54 [ Youtube ]

The Cosmic Web, or: What does the universe look like at a VERY large scale?

Nov 6, 2010

The Millennium Simulation featured in this clip was run in 2005 by the Virgo Consortium, an international group of astrophysicists from Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan and the United States.

15.07.2020 - 16:52 [ Vice.com ]

Scientists Discovered a Gigantic Structure in a Hidden Zone of Space

(today)

However, this particular structure is located in the “Zone of Avoidance,” which is the region of space right behind the dusty center of the Milky Way from our perspective on Earth. As a result, our galaxy’s bulk has blocked it from view—until now.

20.05.2020 - 01:52 [ Ars Technica ]

NASA’s human spaceflight chief just resigned, and the timing couldn’t be worse

The timing of Doug Loverro’s departure is terrible, with NASA’s first launch of humans in nearly nine years due to occur in just eight days.

The space agency offered a bland statement regarding Loverro’s resignation as Associate Administrator for Human Exploration and Operations (HEO) at NASA.

16.04.2020 - 03:18 [ Nature Astronomy ]

An extremely energetic supernova from a very massive star in a dense medium

Here we present a new event, SN2016aps, offset from the centre of a low-mass galaxy, that radiated ≳5 × 1051 erg, necessitating a hyper-energetic supernova explosion.

25.03.2020 - 01:01 [ ScienceAlert ]

Superconductivity Has Been Discovered in Meteorites For The First Time

Scientists have found naturally occurring superconducting materials in extraterrestrial objects for the first time, discovering superconductive grains embedded inside two distinct meteorites that crash-landed on Earth.

12.01.2020 - 03:21 [ Wikipedia ]

FAST (Radioteleskop)

Die Inbetriebnahme wurde mit drei Jahren veranschlagt und dauerte von Juli 2016 bis September 2019. Dabei wurden bereits über hundert Pulsare entdeckt.

12.01.2020 - 03:08 [ CCTV Video News Agency / Youtube ]

World’s Largest Radio Telescope Starts Formal Operation in China

China completed commissioning of the world’s largest and most sensitive radio telescope on Saturday, putting it into formal operation after a productive three-year trial.

01.01.2020 - 23:13 [ NASA ]

NASA to Announce New Discoveries at Annual Astronomy Meeting

NASA researchers will present new findings on a wide range of astrophysics and other space science topics at the 235th Meeting of the American Astronomical Society, Saturday, Jan. 4, through Wednesday, Jan. 8, in Honolulu. NASA-related briefings will stream live on the agency’s website.

22.11.2019 - 20:08 [ CBS News ]

Spacewalkers press ahead with space station cosmic ray detector repair

The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer was designed to detect high-energy cosmic rays in long-term research to learn what happened to the antimatter presumably cooked up in the big bang. It also is looking for clues about the nature of unseen dark matter and the equally mysterious dark energy that is speeding up the expansion of the universe.

15.11.2019 - 11:02 [ Washington Post ]

Here’s a look at some amazing space images from 2019

Nov. 11, 2019 | This still image from video shows Mercury as it passes between Earth and the sun. The solar system’s smallest and innermost planet resembles a tiny black dot during the transit, which began at 7:35 apictures.m. EST. Mercury’s last transit was in 2016.

15.10.2019 - 18:46 [ CNN ]

Interstellar comet fits right in with our solar system

At the end of August, amateur astronomer Gennady Borisov spotted a new comet while at the MARGO observatory in Crimea. The amateur astronomer used a 0.65-meter telescope he built and saw something that resembled a comet with a short tail.

Observations by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory Solar System Dynamics Group have supported that …

13.08.2019 - 02:12 [ Gizmodo ]

How to Watch the Peak of the Perseid Meteor Shower Tonight

One of the year’s best meteor showers peaks tonight into tomorrow and Wednesday, which means it’s a great opportunity to wake up early, find a dark place outdoors, and enjoy the spectacle.

13.07.2019 - 22:05 [ Phys.org ]

Russia launches space telescope

Russia launched a space telescope Saturday from the cosmodrome in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, a joint project with Germany intended to replace one it lost in January.

14.03.2019 - 22:05 [ Reuters ]

Russian space rocket lifts off with astronauts who survived rocket failure

The Soyuz MS-12 took off at 1914 GMT, as planned, and is due to bring Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin and U.S. astronauts Nick Hague and Christina Koch to the International Space Station around eight hours later.

07.12.2018 - 23:18 [ Tass ]

India, Russia to create working group on cooperation in manned cosmonautics

In his speech devoted to Independence Day, August 15, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated that the country will have independently sent an Indian crew to space by 2022, when India will be celebrating the 75th anniversary of independence. Representatives for the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) reported then that a crew of three people is expected to be sent into the low-earth orbit at an altitude of 300-400 km where it will work five to seven days.

08.10.2018 - 21:05 [ V3.co.uk ]

NASA’s Voyager 2 probe detects increase in cosmic rays as it approaches the heliosphere

Cosmic rays are fast-moving particles that originate outside the solar system. Some of these cosmic rays are blocked by the heliosphere, so mission planners expect that Voyager 2 will measure an increase in the rate of cosmic rays as it approaches and crosses the boundary of the heliosphere.

08.10.2018 - 21:01 [ Outerplaces.com ]

NASA’s Voyager 2 Probe Is About To Slip Beyond The Boundaries Of Our Solar System And Into Interstellar Space

Voyager 2 began it’s journey away from Earth back in 1977 and is roughly 11 billion miles from home. In 2007 it entered the outermost layer of the heliosphere, and now based on data recorded by the probe’s Cosmic Ray Subsystem instrument, NASA scientists say there’s a good chance that it is about to reach the boundary (known as the heliopause) and join Voyager 1 in the history books as the second human-made object to go interstellar. Back in August, the cosmic rays hitting the probe increased by five percent.

15.09.2018 - 19:36 [ Xinhuanet ]

NASA launches high-precision satellite to measure polar ice thickness

Also, a pair of tiny satellites launched together with ICESat-2 will study how energetic electrons make their way into Earth’s atmosphere from space.

19.08.2018 - 20:50 [ National Center for Biotechnology Information / National Institutes of Health ]

Cosmic Influence on the Sun-Earth Environment

(Dezember 2008) Since the early days of human civilization we have looked at the sky and tried to understand the environment of the Earth and the Universe [1, 2, 3, 4, and 5]. We are continuously collecting data for different environmental parameters. Sudden heat or cold waves, tornados, erratic rainfall and snowfall are being observed and their forewarning has been attempted. Efforts have been made to understand the influence of stars and the Sun, which, although they are distant objects in space, can influence the environment of the Earth. Extragalactic cosmic rays measured as neutron counting rate, represent an energy spectrum, which is being received by the solar system from the distant stars; the particles of cosmic rays are atom –nuclei with almost light velocity [6, 7]. The effects of the Sun on the environment of the Earth were found to be modulated by the geomagnetic field and the ionizing potential of the cosmic rays [8]. Earth directed Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) and its effects on the thermosphere, ionosphere and atmosphere have been studied. During Earth directed CME a beam of electrons (plasma) is pumped towards the Earth [9]. This beam of electrons is highly conductive and generates an electric field that is transmitted to Earth’s natural plasmosphere and ionosphere. This thin layer of changed electric field further influences the ionosphere and atmosphere of the earth [24]. Since a beam of electrons is carried by an electric current, a magnetic disturbance would be produced. Starbursts are caused by a special variety of neutron star known as a magnetar. These fast-spinning, compact stellar bodies create intense magnetic fields that trigger explosions, which are known as starbursts. Starbursts cause the Sun to develop low Planetary Indices (Kp) and low Electron flux (E-flux) conditions for the Sun-Earth Environment.
(…)
If the electron flux from the sun is low, with the subsequent rise in cosmic rays simultaneously anomalous snowfall and lowering of the atmospheric temperature has been observed. It would be possible to understand the movement of clouds and snowfall, as well as atmospheric moisture, if we could efficiently calculate the influence of space weather and cosmic influence on the thermosphere and atmosphere of the Earth [12]. Based on the same hypothesis it was found that an abnormal rise and sudden fall in E-flux, Kp index and atmospheric temperature has the possibility of triggering earthquakes in active fault areas of the Earth due to temporary changes in the magnetic field of the Earth. The whole process was expressed as a precursor of earthquakes in active fault areas.

14.07.2018 - 16:25 [ New York Times ]

It Came From a Black Hole, and Landed in Antarctica

For the first time, astronomers followed cosmic neutrinos into the fire-spitting heart of a supermassive blazar.

14.07.2018 - 16:24 [ TUMuenchen1 / Youtube ]

IceCube Neutrino Telescope Detects Origin of Extragalactic Particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

14.07.2018 - 15:41 [ IceCube Neutrino Observatory at Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station ]

IceCube neutrinos point to long-sought cosmic ray accelerator

An international team of scientists has found the first evidence of a source of high-energy cosmic neutrinos, ghostly subatomic particles that can travel unhindered for billions of light years from the most extreme environments in the universe to Earth.

The observations, made by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory at the Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station and confirmed by telescopes around the globe and in Earth’s orbit, help resolve a more than a century-old riddle about what sends subatomic particles such as neutrinos and cosmic rays speeding through the universe.

14.07.2018 - 15:32 [ zlotonews.com/ ]

Scientists capture mysterious ‘ghost particle’ in a giant ice cube in ‘triumph’ that changes how we see the universe

Scientists have captured a ghost-like subatomic particle on Earth, helping to solve a mystery baffling scientists for 100 years.

The so-called “ghost particle” was trapped by researchers in a giant ice cube at the South Pole.

It’s actually a high-energy neutrino, and is the first of its type ever detected by scientists.

Importantly, researchers believe they’ve tracked its likely source: a supermassive black hole that emits light and cosmic rays.

11.05.2018 - 15:02 [ Dallas News ]

Ted Cruz calls Trump effort to phase out International Space Station ‚irresponsible‘

Despite his resistance to Trump’s plans for the space station, Cruz has been a supporter of commercializing space efforts since taking over the Commerce Committee panel that deals with NASA.

On Tuesday, he said that efforts to reach Mars can’t only be done with government dollars. Instead, he argued, Washington should fund NASA while also incentivizing the private sector to expand investments in space.

08.05.2018 - 02:39 [ Daily Nation ]

Kenya to launch its first locally made satellite into space

The Nano-satellite that was developed by students and researchers of the University of Nairobi in partnership with Japanese Space Agency (JAXA) was handed over to the JAXA Tsukuba Space Center in January to prepare for its deployment.

04.05.2018 - 14:51 [ popularmechanics.com ]

How a Syrian Airstrike Got Help From Space

(24.4.2018) Space electronic warfare Capt. Andrew „Ghost“ Harris and space weapons officer Capt. Ryan „Pippin“ Foster have an urgent task—to make sure the coming allied strike takes full advantage of U.S. satellites in orbit.

“For something of this scale, this is one of—if not the—first time we have had space guys directly involved in the planning, influencing that mission, and developing effects specifically designed to support its execution,” says Morgan. “I’ve been involved in the Air Force for 24 years and I’ve never seen anything like it.”