Space

China shows off pictures of the moon in full color

China shows off pictures of the moon in full color

The space fever has reached the Far East. Or rather, the increased interest in space exploration and science may have helped push China to finally share to the rest of the world one of its biggest, though perhaps lesser known, achievements in this field of science. In 2013, it launched the Chang'e 3 lander and become the third country to ever make a soft-landing on the Moon. And although its accompanying Yutu rover is no longer functional, it was able to snap these clear, hi-res, true color photos of the moon.

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Massive Gas cloud boomerangs back to our Milky Way – but don’t fret!

Massive Gas cloud boomerangs back to our Milky Way – but don’t fret!

A beastly cloud of gas is headed towards our galaxy right this minute - but it won't arrive for 30 million years. What's interesting about this particular gas is not only that it's traveling at 700,000 miles per hour, but that it's been here before. This "Smith Cloud" as it's called came from the Milky Way and to the Milky Way it will return - 70 million years ago it left, and 30 million years from now it'll have swung around for the return.

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Hubble views Smith Cloud traveling at 700,000 mph

Hubble views Smith Cloud traveling at 700,000 mph

Astronomers using the Hubble Space telescope have viewed the Smith Cloud, a high velocity could of hydrogen gas. The Smith Cloud is a massive cloud of gas that is outside of the Milky Way galaxy and is traveling at 700,000 mph. The most unique aspect of the Smith Cloud is that its trajectory is well known.

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Blue Origin relaunched, landed the rocket it landed last year

Blue Origin relaunched, landed the rocket it landed last year

The rivalry between Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin and Elon Musk's SpaceX has just entered another chapter. Last November, Blue Origin stole SpaceX's thunder by claiming the title of being the first to successfully land a rocket back from space, albeit sub orbital space. Now, it has once more beaten Musk's company to the punch. Not only was it able to launch the New Shepard booster that it was able to land in one piece last year, it was able to land it again, and in one piece again, ready for launching again.

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Space may be filled with plasma ‘noodles’

Space may be filled with plasma ‘noodles’

According to a new report, the Milky Way may be home to so-called plasma lenses that are shaped like noodles, or sometimes like hazelnuts or lasagna sheets. These plasma lenses are invisible, and details about them first started surfacing some three decades ago; researchers found signs of them near quasars. These pockets of plasma have largely remained a mystery, but a recent breakthrough has revealed their shapes.

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ISS astronaut plays ping-pong with a ball of water

ISS astronaut plays ping-pong with a ball of water

Life on the ISS is never boring and you can do things in microgravity that you could never think of when you are on Earth. You can make floating balls of water for instance simply by squeezing water out of a straw. Astronaut Scott Kelly has shown off something cool that you could never do on Earth, play ping-pong with a floating orb of water.

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Researcher says aliens are quiet because they are dead

Researcher says aliens are quiet because they are dead

All you have to do is look up at the night sky to see how many stars are out there, many with Earth-like worlds orbiting the star. Scientists searching for alien life have often wondered why with so many potentially habitable planets orbiting the plethora of stars in the universe, why haven't we heard any signs of other intelligent life.

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SpaceX tests SuperDraco engines that will actually land crew back to Earth

SpaceX tests SuperDraco engines that will actually land crew back to Earth

SpaceX definitely doesn't lack ambition, or things to test. Barely a week after it nearly succeeded, but still failed, to land a Falcon 9 rocket on a sea platform, it is firing up rockets again, but this time for an even more experimental, and luckily less explosive, test. This time, it is the SuperDraco engines that are being put to the test, along with the software and other systems that would eventually allow a Crew Dragon spacecraft, carrying humans inside, to have a nice, soft landing back to earth.

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New data teases enormous ‘Planet Nine’ may exist

New data teases enormous ‘Planet Nine’ may exist

Researchers say new data suggests a massive planet, one about ten times the size of Earth, circles the Sun in a huge orbit that takes between 10,000 and 20,000 years. This celestial body has been dubbed ‘Planet Nine,’ and assuming it exists, it lies far out in the solar system in the Kuiper belt. Alas, no one has actually seen Planet Nine at this point in time.

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Five planets will align starting tomorrow morning

Five planets will align starting tomorrow morning

Starting tomorrow morning and lasting into February, five planets will align in what is a rare but favorite celestial event. It has been more than 10 years since Mercury, Venus, Mars, Saturn, and Jupiter aligned in the night sky in such a way that anyone could see them with the naked eye. Some of the planets will be a little more dim than others, though, so you should probably bring binoculars as a backup.

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Astronaut shows how coffee is made aboard the ISS

Astronaut shows how coffee is made aboard the ISS

Doing the simple and mundane things we do every morning here on Earth takes on a completely new challenge in space. The challenge in microgravity is that things just don’t work the same way they do here on Earth in normal gravity. For instance making a simple cup of coffee becomes a complex process that requires specially engineered systems.

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Watch SpaceX’s three sea landings side by side

Watch SpaceX’s three sea landings side by side

While nothing will take away SpaceX's victory with the world's first orbital landing, it still has a long way to go before it gets the landing that it really, really wants: landing at sea, on a drone-driven platform. Sadly, thrice it attempted that and thrice it failed to win the laurel. Now you can watch all three attempts, not one after another but all together, in all their exploding glory, thanks to this side by side by side compilation, thanks to APTX 4869.

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