Space

Data from lost Hitomi satellite suggests black holes may be galactic regulators

Data from lost Hitomi satellite suggests black holes may be galactic regulators

Earlier this year, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) launched its Hitomi satellite into space. The x-ray satellite was intended to study, among other things, the Perseus cluster, a massive cluster of galaxies more than 200 million light years from Earth. Hitomi was the most advanced x-ray satellite to launch successfully into space and had the potential to lead to a number of excellent discoveries, but unfortunately, it was only a month before the satellite started to spin out of control and break apart, with JAXA announcing it had failed in its attempts to reconnect with the satellite not long after.

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World’s largest radio telescope completed in China

World’s largest radio telescope completed in China

For the last half decade, researchers in China have been at work on a gigantic radio telescope hailed as the world's largest single dish radio telescope. That monster telescope completed construction on July 3, 2016 with the installation of the last of its 4,450 reflecting panels. The telescope is equivalent in size to 30 soccer fields and is called the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope or FAST.

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Juno probe is finally in orbit around Jupiter

Juno probe is finally in orbit around Jupiter

Five years after it left our home, the Juno probe, aptly named after the Roman queen of the gods, has finally entered Jupiter's orbit. Although it is but a means to the probe's ultimate goal, which is, of course, studying the biggest planet in the solar system, the fact that it got to that point in one piece is nothing short of a scientific and engineering miracle. Presuming it survives the next 20 months, Juno will be able to amass a wealth of scientific data that will hopefully give further insight not only into the nature of the giant but into the origins of our solar system itself.

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Rosetta will end its mission by crashing into comet on September 30

Rosetta will end its mission by crashing into comet on September 30

The European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission, which involves a probe orbiting Comet 67P (also known as Churyumov-Gerasimenko), will finally be coming to an end after 12 years of study. The space agency has scheduled September 30th as the spacecraft's last, where it will make a controlled crash into the surface of its partnering space rock. Think of it like a viking funeral, but only for a space probe.

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Ancient tombs may have served as telescopes for rituals

Ancient tombs may have served as telescopes for rituals

Ancient stone tombs in Portugal may have served as a sort of telescope to enhance one’s ability to see stars for ritualistic purposes. The tombs are 6,000 years old and made of stone, and they feature a peculiarly lengthy but low-height entrance. As well, researchers believe they may have found the particular star these ‘telescopes’ were aimed at: Aldebaran, a bright red star located in the Taurus constellation.

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Flames and fanfare as NASA’s Mars mission rocket aces testing

Flames and fanfare as NASA’s Mars mission rocket aces testing

As ways to disturb the peace and quiet of the desert go, firing up the most powerful rocket in the world has to be near the top of the list. That was the fun & games had by NASA and Orbital ATK today, testing out the new Space Launch System (SLS) booster that will one day take first uncrewed probes and then astronauts to Mars.

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Google Earth gets beautiful update with Landsat 8 imagery

Google Earth gets beautiful update with Landsat 8 imagery

Google Earth has always been an impressive feat of technology on its own, but today things got a lot more beautiful. As a follow up to its first cloud-free mosaic of our fine planet (which was released a whole three years ago if you can believe it), today Google rolled out a new version of the mosaic using imagery from the Landsat 8 satellite. The results, as you can imagine, are quite awe-inspiring.

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As crunch day nears, NASA’s Juno beams home stunning Jupiter photo

As crunch day nears, NASA’s Juno beams home stunning Jupiter photo

NASA's Juno mission to Jupiter may still be a week out from the distant planet, but it's already sending back unique images of the gas giant. The probe isn't expected to reach Jupiter until July 4th, but has been beaming back early photography as it makes its final approach, including hitherto-unseen angles of not only the planet but its four largest moons, too.

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NASA’s Curiosity rover will attempt to collect water sample on Mars

NASA’s Curiosity rover will attempt to collect water sample on Mars

Over the last year, NASA has discovered numerous evidence that liquid water exists on Mars. With signs the red planet once had lakes, and frozen water found on mountains, NASA now wants to try collecting a sample, and plans to use the Curiosity rover to do it. The robot is already located near Mars's Gale Crater, and it will travel to inspect a pair of gullies on the side of Mount Sharp.

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Pluto’s moon Charon is home to a ‘super’ Grand Canyon, says NASA

Pluto’s moon Charon is home to a ‘super’ Grand Canyon, says NASA

We’ve see many highly detailed, usually stunning images of Pluto over past months, and now NASA is back with a similarly great photo, only this time it’s of Pluto’s moon Charon. As with other photos taken by New Horizons recently, the image is very detailed and high in quality, and in it we see a massive ridge etched into the moon — one so big it appears a piece of the celestial body is about to chip free.

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Hubble spies Neptune’s newest dark spot

Hubble spies Neptune’s newest dark spot

The Hubble Space Telescope has been busily snapping photos of planets and other objects in the solar system and galaxy for years and some of its latest photos taken last month are of Neptune. In these new photos, taken on May 16, 2016, Hubble has spied a new dark spot in the atmosphere of the cold blue planet. These images aren't the first time that we have seen such a dark spot on Neptune.

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NASA TV launches on Apple TV

NASA TV launches on Apple TV

NASA has announced that it has launched its app on a new platform, this time it works on the latest generation of the Apple TV. The app was previously offered on Android, iPad, iPhone, and Fire OS devices. Prior to being rolled out for the Apple TV, the app was downloaded over 17 million times across all available device platforms.

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