Space

Blue Origin announces New Glenn rocket, plans to see it fly by 2020

Blue Origin announces New Glenn rocket, plans to see it fly by 2020

Blue Origin announced today that's it been hard at work at developing the successor to its New Shepard rocket, which saw its third and fourth launches earlier this year. Named after John Glenn, the first American to enter orbit around the Earth, Blue Origin's New Glenn rocket will come in two different variants and may be space bound by the end of the decade.

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Virgin Galactic resumes test flights 2 years after fatal accident

Virgin Galactic resumes test flights 2 years after fatal accident

In 2014, a test flight conducted by Virgin Galactic, the company's commercial space flight division, ended in tragedy when a crew member was killed in a crash. Now, just shy of two years later, the company has held its first successful test flight since the accident. Virgin Galactic announced on Friday that a four-hour flight had been performed over the Mojave desert at a height of over 50,000 feet, marking the debut of the recently completed SpaceShip Two passenger vehicle, the VSS Unity.

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NASA Osiris-Rex mission launches towards asteroid Bennu

NASA Osiris-Rex mission launches towards asteroid Bennu

Yesterday the NASA Osiris-Rex mission launched without a hitch. This mission is heading to an asteroid called Bennu with plans to take a sample of the asteroid and return it to Earth for study. Osiris-REx is an acronym, which is no surprise when you consider how famous NASA is for acronym names. The name stands for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer.

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Ceres has a massive ice volcano that is half the height of Mount Everest

Ceres has a massive ice volcano that is half the height of Mount Everest

Just because Ceres is a dwarf planet doesn't mean that it has nothing of interest on its surface. As scientists have studied Ceres we have found that it may have ice deposits in its permanently shadowed regions. We have also learned that it has salt, mountains, and shiny craters on its surface. NASA has now offered up an image that shows a massive ice volcano sitting on the surface of the dwarf planet.

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Rosetta finds Philae crammed into a crack on comet surface

Rosetta finds Philae crammed into a crack on comet surface

More than a little drama has happened with the Rosetta mission to Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. Rosetta is the orbiter that circled the comet taking images and recording data while the Philae was a lander that was going to head down to the surface of the comet and send back even more data. The problem was that things didn’t go as planned for Philae.

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NASA spacecraft captures double eclipse in new video

NASA spacecraft captures double eclipse in new video

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, more commonly called the SDO, caught a rare double eclipse up close as both the Earth and the moon crossed in front of the sun. It’s a rare event, and one that we get to see up-close thanks to a video the space agency has made public. All we see are two massive dark shadows, but there’s an easy way to tell them apart — the Earth’s edges look fuzzy when it passes in front of the sun, while the moon’s edges are super sharp and clear.

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Jupiter’s North Pole is so unlike Jupiter, other gas planets

Jupiter’s North Pole is so unlike Jupiter, other gas planets

When you say “North Pole”, people will undoubtedly think of elves, Santa, and snow. Jupiter’s north pole, however, is anything but jolly. Initial data acquired from the Juno spacecraft’s first orbital flyby have started to open up more questions than NASA scientists could have imagine. While both north and south poles are, indeed, as stormy as the tempestuous giant of our solar system, images that Juno have gathered defy expectations and presumptions, revealing a plant that is just as mysterious as it is huge.

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SpaceX rocket explosion destroys Facebook’s first satellite

SpaceX rocket explosion destroys Facebook’s first satellite

Today a SpaceX rocket has exploded during a static fire test at Cape Canaveral, destroying $200 million in payload alone. This explosion destroyed an Amos-6 satellite (which was its payload as it were) - this all having taken place at SLC40 Cape Canaveral specifically at 1307 UTC September 1st, 2016. The explosion happened to a SpaceX Falcon 9 No. F9-029 - that's according to Johnathan McDowell, astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

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SETI is investigating a signal potentially from a much more advanced civilization

SETI is investigating a signal potentially from a much more advanced civilization

Researchers and scientists working for SETI and similar organizations around the world are currently deep into an investigation of a signal that could be from a much more advanced civilization than our own. The signal was detected on May 15, 2015 by the RATAN-600 radio telescope array in Russia and kept secret from the international community. The signal discovered came from a star about 6.3-billion years old in the constellation Hercules about 95 light years away from the Earth.

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New mini-moon discovered orbiting Earth

New mini-moon discovered orbiting Earth

This isn't April fools day, and we're not pulling your leg - there is indeed a second rocky companion out in space orbiting Earth - besides our moon. This miniature-moon, as it's nicknamed, goes by the scientific name "2016 HO3". It's an asteroid, technically, but it's nearly unique in our known history of Earth and nearby objects. This quasi-satellite or near-Earth companion is "the best and most stable example to date" of such a space body. "One other asteroid -- 2003 YN107 -- followed a similar orbital pattern for a while over 10 years ago, but it has since departed our vicinity. This new asteroid is much more locked onto us," said Paul Chodas, manager of NASA's Center for Near-Earth Object (NEO) Studies at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

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Scientists complete year-long Mars simulation mission in Hawaii

Scientists complete year-long Mars simulation mission in Hawaii

A group of six scientists has completed a mission in Hawaii conducted for NASA that simulated how humans would live on the surface of Mars. The mission spanned an entire year and during that time, the team had limited communication leaving them in near-isolation the entire time. During the mission, the only time the scientists were able to go outside their dome structure was if they were wearing a spacesuit.

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Juno safely completes first of 36 Jupiter flybys

Juno safely completes first of 36 Jupiter flybys

Space science has had a very remarkable year, not counting the advances made in launching and landing rockets. Just a little over a year ago, New Horizons made history by passing the former planet Pluto. And just last month, the Juno probe reached fame when it finally reached Jupiter. It, too, is now making history has NASA reported a successful and uneventful flyby of the planet. And although it is just the first of 36 flybys scheduled for its mission, it takes the probe closest to the largest and one of the most mysterious family members of our solar system.

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