Space

US Air Force says California residents may hear sonic booms this weekend

US Air Force says California residents may hear sonic booms this weekend

People living and otherwise located in central California this weekend may be in for brief moments of noisiness, but the United States Air Force says not to panic. Sonic booms may be heard in the region resulting from a planned space test that'll involve launching the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. The event is set to take place on Saturday, October 6.

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Curiosity Rover to switch to backup computer brain in attempt to fix storage issues

Curiosity Rover to switch to backup computer brain in attempt to fix storage issues

It can be a challenge to troubleshoot a computer when it's sitting on the desk in front of you. Trying to troubleshoot a computer system that is on another planet is infinitely more difficult. This is exactly what NASA JPL engineers are working on with a problem in one of the computers on the Curiosity Rover on Mars.

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Evidence of possible exomoon detected for the first time

Evidence of possible exomoon detected for the first time

Researchers have found evidence of what may be a moon outside of our solar system. Assuming they have discovered an exomoon, it will be the first of its kind ever found, marking a new milestone in the exploration of the universe around us. The possible exomoon is located in the Cygnus constellation about 8,000 light-years from Earth.

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This reusable Moon lander is Lockheed Martin’s vision for space colonies

This reusable Moon lander is Lockheed Martin’s vision for space colonies

Lockheed Martin unveiled a new lunar lander concept at the International Astronautical Congress in Germany today, giving the public a look at a lander that may one day take a crew to the Moon. This is a reusable lander, the company explained, and it involves systems from NASA's own Orion spacecraft, among other things. In addition to four people, the lander's initial configuration would support a 2,000lbs cargo payload.

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Astronauts may experience serious gut damage from deep space travel

Astronauts may experience serious gut damage from deep space travel

A new study reveals that astronauts may suffer serious gastrointestinal damage during deep space travel. The findings are based on animal model simulations that look at the effects of galactic cosmic radiation exposure on GI tissue. The damage may result in long-term issues, including an increased risk of tumor growth, the latest of a growing body of research hinting at major health issues related to space travel.

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NASA Kepler spacecraft put back to sleep over pointing issue

NASA Kepler spacecraft put back to sleep over pointing issue

This summer, NASA revealed that its Kepler spacecraft was very low on fuel, and as a result the space agency initiated a hibernation mode. That change in state was designed to conserve the remaining fuel in preparation for downloading scientific data, after which point the spacecraft would spend its final days making new observations. A new problem has forced the team to put Kepler back into the hibernation-like state, however.

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University of Central Florida is selling fake Martian dirt

University of Central Florida is selling fake Martian dirt

Preparation for something as complex and costly as a manned mission to Mars take decades to complete. Part of that preparation is being sure that the astronauts you send can survive once they arrive. It would be impossible to send enough food to last a colony years on the surface of Mars so the team will need to be able to grow their own food. Enter the University of Central Florida or UCF.

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Skull asteroid returns for another flyby, but it’ll miss Halloween this year

Skull asteroid returns for another flyby, but it’ll miss Halloween this year

The skull-shaped asteroid that first made headlines in 2015 has returned, as foretold, for another flyby. In December 2017, scientists advised the public that asteroid 2015 TB145 will make another pass relatively near Earth in 2018, though it won't happen in time for Halloween. Instead, the giant space skull will zoom by in November.

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Hayabusa 2 sends back highest resolution images of Ryugu yet

Hayabusa 2 sends back highest resolution images of Ryugu yet

Japan has been operating a mission on the surface of an asteroid for a while now. The Hayabusa2 spacecraft has been snapping images and its rovers have been cruising the surface of the asteroid snapping pics. Recently JAXA, the Japanese space agency, shared the highest resolution images of Ryugu to date.

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NASA RainCube mini weather satellites may improve forecast accuracy

NASA RainCube mini weather satellites may improve forecast accuracy

In July, NASA astronauts on the International Space Station deployed a small satellite called RainCube that monitors storms and sends information about them to researchers. The tiny CubeSat sent back its first storm images in August, relaying data it had captured of a storm over Mexico. Following that, RainCube then captured images of Hurricane Florence's first rainfall.

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ESA’s Gaia has found stars that might be the home of Oumuamua interstellar object

ESA’s Gaia has found stars that might be the home of Oumuamua interstellar object

Scientists and astronomers around the globe were aflutter last year when an interstellar object called Oumuamua was discovered. The argument over the object spanned from if it was an asteroid or comet to what star system the object originated from. The ESA has been using data gleaned from the Gaia spacecraft to try and determine what star systems Oumuamua could have possibly originated from.

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NASA Opportunity rover spied in distant Mars aerial image

NASA Opportunity rover spied in distant Mars aerial image

The possibly doomed NASA Opportunity rover was spotted in an aerial image of Mars, the space agency has revealed. The team still hasn't managed to communicate with the rover, which lost most of its power during a global dust storm that blotted out the Sun. Thanks to the NASA Reconnaissance Orbiter, however, the space agency has been able to visually see its rover for the first time in many weeks.

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