Typically, when we see high-resolution content taken from satellites in space, we are looking at still photos. A company called Skybox Imaging has shown off some of the very cool HD footage that it has taken from its first satellite orbiting the Earth. Currently the company has a single satellite in orbit called SkySat-1.
China has been successful so far in its first mission to the moon. The Chinese launched their moon mission, which landed on the moon on December 14. Both the Yutu Rover and the Chang'e-3 lander have functioned as designed so far. One of the biggest tests for both the pieces of Chinese equipment is set to begin soon.
Yesterday's spacewalk outside the International Space Station resulted in a record-breaking amount of time spent moving around in the vacuum of space by a Russian. Commander Oleg Kotov and Flight Engineer Sergey Ryazanskiy spent 8 hours and 7 minutes on the mission, breaking the previous Russian record of 7 hours and 29 minutes set by Flight Engineers Fyodor Yurchikhin and Alexander Misurkin Aug. 16, 2013. The achievement was a little softened, however, as the mission didn't go entirely as planned.
The International Space Station is seeing quite a bit of activity this Christmas week, with today’s action surrounding the installation of two high-fidelity cameras. This installation was initiated under Expedition 38 and executed by Commander Oleg Kotov and Flight Engineer Sergey Ryazanskiy of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos). This mission happens just three days after a US-based expedition (as seen in the hero image of this article) to replace faulty water pumps on the station.
In a few days, the ESA spacecraft dubbed Mars Express will streak past the largest moon of Mars, Phobos. The spacecraft will make the closest approach to Phobos ever made at only 28 miles above the surface of the moon. The catch is that Mars Express will be traveling so fast it won't be able to take photos.
NASA currently has a rover exploring Mars called Curiosity and it's not the first rover to explore the red planet. The thing that most of the rovers NASA has sent on exploration missions so far have in common is the wheel. The rovers use wheels to get around the surface of the planet for their exploration.
The astronauts who this week took to the vacuum of space to repair a malfunctioning ammonia coolant pump on the exterior of the International Space Station are safely back inside. The electrical systems that depend on the cooling loop run by the pump are now back online. Today astronauts Rick Mastracchio, Mike Hopkins, and Koichi Wakata took the time to reflect back on the spacewalks and provide us with some photos of the operation.
We have been following the efforts by NASA and astronauts on the ISS to repair the coolant system issues that have plagued the ISS. NASA ordered a spacewalk to fix the cooling system problem on December 18. On the 22 of December, the astronauts finished the first of possibly three spacewalks to make the repair.
The European Space Agency last week launched Gaia, a star-charting satellite that will repeatedly survey a billion stars over the course of five years. It is en route to a virtual orbit point called "L2", 1.5 million km further from the sun than the planet Earth orbits. It will measure the position, brightness, temperature and chemical composition of each star 70 times.