Space Research & Astronomy Rosetta spacecraft completes mission with crash landing into comet The past two years of data from Rosetta have provided an unprecedented understanding of comets and the formation of our Solar System. Fri, 14 Oct 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-10-14T05:00:00Z Potentially Earth-like planet found in habitable zone of nearest star The main differences between Earth and the newly discovered Proxima b are the very different physical characteristics of their respective parents’ stars. Sat, 27 Aug 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-08-27T05:00:00Z Astronomers reveal most detailed map of galaxy distribution The Sloan Digital Sky Survey has enabled scientists to make the most precise measurements yet of dark energy and the acceleration of the expansion of the Universe. Mon, 15 Aug 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-08-15T05:00:00Z One year since the New Horizons flyby of Pluto During the past year, the NASA spacecraft has sent back images showing canyons, plains, mountains and evidence for liquid water on Pluto. Fri, 15 Jul 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-07-15T05:00:00Z Juno spacecraft enters orbit around Jupiter Juno’s mission will reveal the interior structure of Jupiter, the largest planet in the solar system, and answer significant questions about its formation. Tue, 05 Jul 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-07-05T05:00:00Z Further steps in finding an Earth-like planet outside the solar system The prospects of finding another planet similar to our own are steadily increasing. Wed, 29 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-06-29T05:00:00Z The detection of gravitational waves: A scientific milestone The discovery of gravitational waves is a vindication of science and the ability of human reason to tackle and overcome the most complex problems. Sat, 13 Feb 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-02-13T05:00:00Z Astronomers detect gravitational waves predicted by Einstein The LIGO Collaboration has published the first direct detection of gravitational waves, ripples in the fabric of space and time. Fri, 12 Feb 2016 05:00:00 GMT 2016-02-12T05:00:00Z Strong evidence for liquid water flows on present-day Mars The dark streaks observed on Mars are most likely salt deposits left behind from liquid water flows across the Martian surface. Tue, 29 Sep 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-09-29T05:00:00Z Discovery of the most Earth-like planet to date At a time of the momentous discovery of planets around other stars, no money can be found to examine them. Sat, 25 Jul 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-07-25T05:00:00Z Pluto and Earth The flyby of Pluto by the spacecraft New Horizons—a scientific achievement of the first order—stands in contrast to the seemingly intractable social crises on our own planet. Fri, 17 Jul 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-07-17T05:00:00Z New Horizons spacecraft completes Pluto flyby The Pluto encounter is the first time that a spacecraft has ever visited the distant world. Wed, 15 Jul 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-07-15T05:00:00Z Pentagon chief outlines plans for space war versus China and Russia The Pentagon is developing new space war capabilities and modernizing its nuclear arsenal to prepare for “great power struggles” against China and Russia. Wed, 08 Jul 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-07-08T05:00:00Z New Horizons spacecraft prepares for Pluto flyby Pluto, a world too small and distant to be seen in detail even with Earth’s best telescopes, is the farthest object explored by a space probe. Wed, 08 Jul 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-07-08T05:00:00Z What we learned about Mercury from the Messenger spacecraft Over the course of its lifetime, Messenger has sent back more than 275,000 images of the planet Mercury. Mon, 22 Jun 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-06-22T05:00:00Z Twenty-five years of the Hubble Space Telescope While it is a public relations boon for NASA, Hubble's true importance lies in its continued and vast contributions to astronomy. Fri, 24 Apr 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-04-24T05:00:00Z New discoveries show that Mars may have once been habitable Recent evidence of nitrogen in the soil and of an ancient Martian ocean increases the likelihood that Mars once housed life. Sat, 28 Mar 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-03-28T05:00:00Z Dawn spacecraft enters orbit around Ceres Dawn is the first spacecraft to successfully orbit two extraterrestrial bodies. Sat, 07 Mar 2015 05:00:00 GMT 2015-03-07T05:00:00Z Orion spacecraft makes first orbital flight The unmanned test flight is only the first step in plans to resume US manned space flight by the year 2021. Mon, 08 Dec 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-12-08T05:00:00Z New telescope reveals first detailed image of a planetary system in formation An international telescope array entering operation has produced the first detailed image showing a planetary system in formation around a young star Mon, 01 Dec 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-12-01T05:00:00Z The comet landing: A new milestone in space exploration The landing of Philae is an important reminder that humanity is capable of great things—capabilities that are constrained not by the productive capacity of mankind, but by the organization of society. Sat, 15 Nov 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-11-15T05:00:00Z Philae spacecraft lands successfully on comet With its touchdown on Wednesday, the Philae module became the first spacecraft to land on the surface of a comet. Thu, 13 Nov 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-11-13T05:00:00Z Capitalism and the space program Technical limitations cannot explain the failure of mankind to maintain a constant tempo of more and more ambitious explorations throughout the solar system and into interstellar space. Wed, 12 Nov 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-11-12T05:00:00Z Deadly SpaceShipTwo crash follows explosion of unmanned Antares rocket The two space disasters in the span of one week highlight the growing prominence of private companies in space missions. Sat, 01 Nov 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-11-01T05:00:00Z US and Indian probes successfully reach Mars orbit Mangalyaan is designed to showcase the growing technical abilities of the Indian Space Research Organization, especially following the failure of a Chinese mission to Mars in 2012. Thu, 25 Sep 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-09-25T05:00:00Z Rosetta spacecraft becomes first manmade probe to orbit a comet The European Space Agency probe reached its target comet after a journey of more than ten years. Fri, 08 Aug 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-08-08T05:00:00Z Ten years at Saturn with the Cassini spacecraft Over the past decade, Cassini has continuously returned data on Saturn's rings, numerous moons and the planet itself. Fri, 04 Jul 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-07-04T05:00:00Z Earth-sized planet in a star’s habitable zone confirmed This is the first exoplanet detected that potentially has liquid water on its surface. Mon, 21 Apr 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-04-21T05:00:00Z <em>Cosmos</em> reboot falls short of the mark The remake of Carl Sagan’s <em>Cosmos</em>, hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson, has its moments, but does not go far enough either in its exposition of science or its criticism of anti-science. Mon, 14 Apr 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-04-14T05:00:00Z Imprint of primordial gravitational waves detected The finding by astronomers working at the South Pole provides confirmation of a key aspect of the Big Bang theory, called the inflationary hypothesis. Mon, 24 Mar 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-03-24T05:00:00Z US continues to militarize space The US military is planning to launch two satellites later this year and two more in 2016 to lay the basis for space hegemony over countries such as China and Russia. Tue, 18 Mar 2014 05:00:00 GMT 2014-03-18T05:00:00Z New study estimates billions of Earth-sized planets orbiting Sun-like stars in the Milky Way galaxy Data from the Kepler spacecraft has established that Earth-sized planets in the habitable zone of Sun-like stars are common in the Universe. Sat, 09 Nov 2013 05:00:00 GMT 2013-11-09T05:00:00Z Peter Higgs and François Englert awarded 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics The theoretical prediction and subsequent discovery of the Higgs boson has provided a greater insight into the origin of mass of subatomic particles. Mon, 21 Oct 2013 05:00:00 GMT 2013-10-21T05:00:00Z Voyager 1 spacecraft enters interstellar space Voyager 1 has done science continuously for 36 years and spanning a journey of 19 billion kilometers. Fri, 04 Oct 2013 05:00:00 GMT 2013-10-04T05:00:00Z One year of the Mars rover Curiosity During its mission so far, NASA’s Curiosity rover has found strong evidence that life similar to terrestrial microbes could have existed on ancient Mars. Tue, 06 Aug 2013 05:00:00 GMT 2013-08-06T05:00:00Z The end of the Herschel Space Observatory mission On April 29, the Herschel Space Observatory exhausted its supply of ultra-cold liquid helium coolant, required to do its most sensitive observations. Tue, 07 May 2013 05:00:00 GMT 2013-05-07T05:00:00Z Two planetary systems with potentially Earth-like conditions Earth-like extra-solar planets have been found orbiting in the “habitable zone,” where radiation levels would permit the existence of the building blocks of life. Mon, 22 Apr 2013 05:00:00 GMT 2013-04-22T05:00:00Z US sequester cuts force NASA to halt outreach programs NASA is halting all public outreach programs as a result of $900 million in budget cuts forced by the sequester. Thu, 28 Mar 2013 05:00:00 GMT 2013-03-28T05:00:00Z Earth-mass planet found orbiting the nearest star A planet with similar mass to the Earth has been found orbiting α Centauri B, our closest interstellar neighbor. Wed, 24 Oct 2012 05:00:00 GMT 2012-10-24T05:00:00Z Voyager spacecraft approaching interstellar space—35 years after launch Voyager 1 and 2 have flown through the Solar System for 35 years and now Voyager 1 is on the verge of becoming humanity’s first interstellar spacecraft. Fri, 28 Sep 2012 05:00:00 GMT 2012-09-28T05:00:00Z The Mars landing Despite efforts to portray it as a triumph for “American values,” the successful landing of the Curiosity rover was the product of collective social effort and scientific planning that is the antithesis of profit-mad individualism. Fri, 10 Aug 2012 05:00:00 GMT 2012-08-10T05:00:00Z Curiosity rover lands on Mars: A milestone of space exploration Curiosity, NASA’s latest Mars rover, has successfully landed on target at Gale crater. Tue, 07 Aug 2012 05:00:00 GMT 2012-08-07T05:00:00Z The 2012 transit of Venus The Sun, the planet Venus and the Earth will line up so that Venus appears to pass across the disk of the Sun. Tue, 05 Jun 2012 05:00:00 GMT 2012-06-05T05:00:00Z New search for life among Jupiter’s ice moons The European Space Agency (ESA) has announced a €1.1 billion unmanned mission to the ice moons of the planet Jupiter. Thu, 17 May 2012 05:00:00 GMT 2012-05-17T05:00:00Z The end of the US space shuttle program The American manned space program is shutting down indefinitely, an event that has considerable historical significance. Fri, 19 Aug 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-08-19T05:00:00Z Herschel telescope discovered twisted ring of gas and dust at the centre of our galaxy The Herschel Space Observatory has identified a twisted ring of dust and gas at the centre of the Milky Way galaxy. Parts of the ring have been seen before but this is the first time it has been observed as a whole. Fri, 05 Aug 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-08-05T05:00:00Z Dawn spacecraft reaches the asteroid Vesta The NASA mission will study the two largest asteroids, first Vesta, then Ceres. Wed, 20 Jul 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-07-20T05:00:00Z Extra-solar planet could sustain Earth-like life The planet Gliese 581 d is believed to be twice the mass of Earth, and could sustain liquid water on the side that faces its star. Mon, 06 Jun 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-06-06T05:00:00Z First spacecraft begins orbiting the planet Mercury MESSENGER is the first space mission to Mercury in more than three decades. Fri, 25 Mar 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-03-25T05:00:00Z Large Hadron Collider will continue experiments into 2012 The physics research conducted in 2010 has allowed for the Large Hadron Collider to extend its operations through 2011 and 2012. Fri, 18 Mar 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-03-18T05:00:00Z Planet formation viewed by astronomers Astronomical observation directly confirms the nebular hypothesis of Kant and Laplace. Fri, 11 Mar 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-03-11T05:00:00Z Stardust spacecraft gives second glimpse of comet Tempel 1 The fly-by took place on February 14, some 210 million miles from Earth Fri, 18 Feb 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-02-18T05:00:00Z Smallest rocky planet outside our solar system discovered NASA has confirmed this month that its Kepler space observatory has now identified the smallest yet planet outside our solar system, exoplanet Kepler-10b. Fri, 28 Jan 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-01-28T05:00:00Z Mars rovers mark seven years on the planet’s surface The two robot exploration vehicles have revolutionized scientific understanding of the planet. Sat, 22 Jan 2011 05:00:00 GMT 2011-01-22T05:00:00Z Bacteria that consumes arsenic boosts search for “alien” life The new bacteria was discovered by a research team at Mono Lake, California. Fri, 10 Dec 2010 05:00:00 GMT 2010-12-10T05:00:00Z Gamma-ray bubbles discovered around our galaxy A giant structure around our Milky Way galaxy has been discovered by the NASA Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. Thu, 18 Nov 2010 05:00:00 GMT 2010-11-18T05:00:00Z Scientists directly image an extra-solar planet’s orbit around a young star For the first time in the history of the search for planets outside the solar system, astronomers have observed a planet going from one side of its parent star to the other. Mon, 19 Jul 2010 05:00:00 GMT 2010-07-19T05:00:00Z Solar Dynamics Observatory―an eye on the Sun One month after its successful launch, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory has begun capturing high-resolution images of solar phenomena at 10-second intervals. Sat, 13 Mar 2010 05:00:00 GMT 2010-03-13T05:00:00Z Spacecraft Kepler discovers five extrasolar planets NASA reported last month that Kepler, the first spacecraft dedicated to searching for planets beyond our solar system, has discovered its first five extrasolar planets. Though they are uninhabitable for Earth-like life—four of the five are even larger than Jupiter—their rapid discovery indicates that Kepler is fully capable of achieving its primary mission, finding a planet resembling Earth, in future years. Tue, 02 Feb 2010 05:00:00 GMT 2010-02-02T05:00:00Z Moon experiment shows presence of water The deliberate crashing of a US rocket into the surface of the Moon has produced evidence of “a significant amount” of water ice, a discovery that could revolutionize the exploration of the Earth’s satellite and even open the way to long-term settlement. Tue, 17 Nov 2009 05:00:00 GMT 2009-11-17T05:00:00Z Newly repaired Hubble telescope releases first images The first images from the repaired and upgraded telescope include a dazzling combination of planetary nebula, star clusters and galaxies. Wed, 23 Sep 2009 05:00:00 GMT 2009-09-23T05:00:00Z Four hundred years since Galileo’s astronomical discoveries The International Year of Astronomy 2009 has been designated by the International Astronomy Union and UNESCO in honor of the 400th anniversary of the discoveries of Galileo Galilei and Johannes Kepler, two of the most important pioneers of modern astronomy. Sat, 15 Aug 2009 05:00:00 GMT 2009-08-15T05:00:00Z Forty years since the first Moon landing Forty years ago, two American astronauts became the first human beings to land on the Moon. This historic feat is all the more remarkable because manned exploration of Earth’s satellite inaugurated by Apollo 11 ended little more than three years later. Mon, 20 Jul 2009 05:00:00 GMT 2009-07-20T05:00:00Z Hubble Space Telescope receives final upgrade New instruments on the Hubble Space Telescope are currently undergoing calibration following the latest upgrade to the venerable scientific instrument. Tue, 23 Jun 2009 05:00:00 GMT 2009-06-23T05:00:00Z New space telescope to search for earth-sized planets On March 6, the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration successfully launched the Kepler mission, which will observe 100,000 stars in search of smaller, Earth-sized planets. Tue, 24 Mar 2009 05:00:00 GMT 2009-03-24T05:00:00Z First images taken of extrasolar planets In a breakthrough expected to foster further discoveries, two teams of astronomers have for the first time directly imaged planets orbiting stars outside the solar system. Mon, 01 Dec 2008 05:00:00 GMT 2008-12-01T05:00:00Z China’s first space walk signals new rivalry in outer space China's third manned space flight, launched on September 25 and returning to earth on September 28, was its most ambitious. Some 40 years after the Soviet Union and the US, China has become only the third country to conduct a space walk. Mon, 13 Oct 2008 05:00:00 GMT 2008-10-13T05:00:00Z Universe expanding faster than expected "There are more things in heaven and earth Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." Hamlet, Act 1, Scene V Wed, 17 Mar 1999 05:00:00 GMT 1999-03-17T05:00:00Z Carl Sagan (1934-1996): An appreciation Detailed discussion of his work and materialist outlook, and includes a focus on his attitude to Trotsky. Mon, 13 Jan 1997 05:00:00 GMT 1997-01-13T05:00:00Z