compiled by Arlene & David Kaplan
In her orbit
Nathalie Cabrol was 5 when she saw the first moon landing on television. Pointing at Neil Armstrong, she told her mother that this was what she wanted to do. Even before then, she stared up at the stars in the night sky near her home in the Paris suburbs and knew that questions were there waiting for her…more
Mysterious aurora Steve seen from Scotland
A mysterious phenomenon dubbed Steve has been spotted by stargazers in Scotland. More properly described as a Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement, it was seen during displays of the Aurora Borealis overnight.
Astronomers are trying to better understand the phenomenon… more
UK will lead European exoplanet mission
A telescope to study the atmospheres of planets beyond our Solar System will be launched by the European Space Agency in the late 2020s. The mission, to be known as Ariel, was selected by the organisation’s Science Programme Committee on Tuesday. The venture will be led scientifically from the UK by University College London…more
Curiosity rover: 2,000 days on Mars
Nasa’s Curiosity rover, also known as the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL), is celebrating 2,000 martian days (sols) investigating Gale Crater on the Red Planet.
In that time, the robot has made some remarkable observations. Here are just a few of them, chosen by the Curiosity science team… more
Big harpoon is ‘solution to space junk’
Airbus is testing a big harpoon to snare rogue or redundant satellites and pull them out of the sky. Airbus is testing a big harpoon to snare rogue or redundant satellites and pull them out of the sky.
The 1m-long projectile would be attached, through a strong tether, to a chase spacecraft…more
UK ‘space drones’ look to Proton rocket ride
UK-headquartered start-up Effective Space aims to put up its first satellite servicing “drones” in 2020.
The company has announced an intent to contract with International Launch Services, which manages the commercial flights of the Russian Proton rocket…more
Cellphones on the Moon? Not So Fast
If a phone buzzes on the moon and no one’s there to answer it, does it make a sound? What does it matter, it’s bound to make news. Two phone companies Vodafone and Nokia said that they planned to build a cellular network in space to support what would be the first privately funded moon landing, planned for next year… more
Signal detected from ‘cosmic dawn’
Scientists say they have observed a signature on the sky from the very first stars to shine in the Universe. They did it with the aid of a small radio telescope in the Australian outback that was tuned to detect the earliest ever evidence for hydrogen.
This hydrogen was in a state that … more
Meet TESS, Seeker of Alien Worlds
The search for cosmic real estate is about to begin anew. No earlier than 6:32 p.m. on April 16, in NASA’s fractured parlance, a little spacecraft known as the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, or TESS, bristling with cameras and ambition, will ascend on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in a blaze of smoke and fire… more
Ghostly galaxy may be missing dark matter
An unusually transparent galaxy about the size of the Milky Way is prompting new questions for astrophysicists.
The object, with the catchy moniker of NGC1052-DF2, appears to contain no dark matter… more