NASA

Flash of a dying star “caught on camera” for the first time

Flash of a dying star “caught on camera” for the first time

We may have images, both static and moving, of stars going boom playing in our head, but actually capturing that brilliant flash of light that heralds the start of a supernova isn't that easy. Even when we're talking about an event that has happened possibly thousands if not millions of years ago. And yet the once defunct Kepler space observatory spacecraft managed to make possible the near impossible, capturing for the first time the so-called shock breakout that precedes the explosion of a dying star.

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Comet to pass Earth in close flyby tomorrow morning

Comet to pass Earth in close flyby tomorrow morning

If you missed today's comet flyby, don't fret -- there will be a second one tomorrow morning, and it'll be even closer than today's (though there is no danger, NASA is sure to warn). This flyby will involve comet P/2016 BA14, and it’ll pass by our planet at 2.2 million or so miles. While that’s a great distance away, relatively speaking, it’ll be the third closest comet flyby since 1983. Tomorrow’s event follows this morning’s flyby of comet 252P/LINEAR.

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New Horizons yields more questions about Pluto than answers

New Horizons yields more questions about Pluto than answers

Last year, humanity achieved an important milestone. The New Horizons probe flew by Pluto in history's closest approach to the dwarf planet in the outermost zone of our solar system. The initial batch of photos were already revealing but that is almost literally just the tip of the iceberg. Scientists involved in the New Horizons studies have just published a paper that reveals even more findings gathered since the probe's first data dump, painting a picture of a planet that is more mysterious than we could have imagined.

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NASA Mars InSight mission set for May 2018 launch

NASA Mars InSight mission set for May 2018 launch

NASA has announced the new launch date that it is targeting to send the Mars InSight mission into the heavens on course to the Red Planet. The InSight mission was originally set to launch in March 2016, but was delayed. NASA is now targeting InSight for launch on May 5, 2018 with landing scheduled for November 26, 2018.

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Mercury’s dark surface due to carbon from the planet itself

Mercury’s dark surface due to carbon from the planet itself

Being the closest to the sun, you'd think Mercury would shine the brightest among the inner planets of the solar system. In truth, however, it reflects even less light than our own moon. Scientists have long speculated on why that is so and what leads to Mercury's very dark facade. Thanks to data gathered by the dearly departed MESSENGER probe, they confirm that carbon is indeed to blame. But interestingly enough, the carbon didn't come from outside forces but right from the planet's crust itself.

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NASA’s New Horizons reveals snow-covered mountains on Pluto

NASA’s New Horizons reveals snow-covered mountains on Pluto

New Horizons, the NASA spacecraft that studied Pluto with a number of flybys last summer, continues to send its data back to Earth, often with new discoveries. Just last week the space agency shared photos of giant frozen canyons in the former planet's North Pole region, and now NASA believes there are mountain peaks covered in methane snow on the surface as well. New high-resolution photos of the southern hemisphere's Cthulhu region, known for its reddish hue, reveal mountains with brightly colored tops.

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Hubble spies most distant galaxy ever discovered

Hubble spies most distant galaxy ever discovered

Scientists from NASA and the ESA have pushed the Hubble Space Telescope to a new distance record. The record comes as the team of researchers has broken the cosmic distance record by measuring the distance to the most distant galaxy ever seen in the Universe. According to scientists, the galaxy they measured existed only 400 million years after the Big Bang.

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Astronaut Scott Kelly grew 2 inches while on ISS

Astronaut Scott Kelly grew 2 inches while on ISS

He’s back on Earth, as we all know, and the medical evaluations have begun. Astronaut Scott Kelly spent 340 days on the International Space Station while his twin brother remained home, it has given NASA the unique opportunity to contrast the effects space has on an astronaut’s body in comparison to the changes that would take place during the same time period spent on Earth. The biggest difference so far? Scott Kelly grew 2-inches taller while on the ISS, and is now designated the taller brother.

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Scott Kelly is back on earth, let the science continue! [UPDATE]

Scott Kelly is back on earth, let the science continue! [UPDATE]

2015 and 2016 will probably be remembered as some of the best years for space science, exploration, and travel in a long time. We've witnessed the historic encounter between the New Horizons spacecraft and Pluto. We've witnessed the historic successful landings of orbital and sub-orbital rockets. And today we're witnessing the return to Earth of astronauts Scott Kelly and Mikhail Korniyenko from the International Space Station, marking not just the longest mission for the ISS but also the acquisition of a potential treasure trove of scientific and medical data in the person of the astronauts.

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NASA’s next X-plane supersonic passenger jet to be quieter

NASA’s next X-plane supersonic passenger jet to be quieter

Short of finally inventing teleportation systems, plane travel is still the fastest way to travel extremely long distances. However, it still has yet to reach its full potential. Supersonic planes were still in their infancy when the government pulled the plug because of their uncomfortable effects on people on land, the phenomenon more popularly known as Sonic Boom. That was more than half a century ago. NASA thinks that science and technology may have caught up enough to get the ball rolling again to build the world's next supersonic passenger jet, for now nicknamed the X-plane.

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NASA’s latest Pluto photo reveals frozen canyons

NASA’s latest Pluto photo reveals frozen canyons

It's been some time now since NASA's New Horizons spacecraft completed its flyby of dwarf planet Pluto, but the project is still producing amazing insights and images. Following recent photos of mountainous regions and a potential ice volcano, NASA has now published an image of the North Pole region, revealing a pockmarked topography full of frozen canyons and valleys. To get a better understanding of just how large and deep all these pits are, the widest area of the planet seen in this photo measures 21,000 miles across.

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NASA boasts record number of astronaut applications

NASA boasts record number of astronaut applications

NASA says it has received a record number of astronaut training applications, with more than 18,300 people submitting their bid to become one of the nation’s next space travelers. In comparison, only 8,000 applications were received back in 1978. The number further dwindled to 6,300 in 2012. NASA had opened to new applications last month, and just recently stopped accepting them on February 18, tallying up the numbers before the long process of picking out finalists.

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