Connect to share and comment

U.S. space telescope spots 715 more planets

By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (Reuters) - Scientists added a record 715 more planets to the list of known worlds beyond the solar system, boosting the overall tally to nearly 1,700, astronomers said on Wednesday. The additions include four planets about 2-1/2 times as big as Earth that are the right distance from their parent stars for liquid surface water, which is believed to be key for life.

When stars explode, it's a messy business

When stars explode, it's a messy business. But the massive blasts are also useful, seeding the universe with such key elements as calcium, iron and titanium. And with the help of a new high-energy X-ray telescope, NASA said Wednesday astronomers are closer than ever to seeing just what's going on. "This is helping us untangle the mystery surrounding how stars explode," said Fiona Harrison, principal investigator on NuSTAR, or the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array.

Europe sets plans for 2024 planet-hunting mission

Europe on Wednesday unveiled plans to launch a major space observatory in 2024 aimed at finding planets orbiting other stars, one of the new frontiers of astronomy. An unmanned probe named PLATO -- for PLAnetary Transits and Oscillations -- will look for telltale wobbles in starlight that point to an "exoplanet" moving in front of its host star, the European Space Agency (ESA) said. The six-year mission has a budget of 600 million euros ($821 million), ESA said. Equipped with 34 small telescopes and cameras, PLATO will scrutinise thousands of star systems.

Europe sets plans for 2024 planet-hunting mission

Europe on Wednesday unveiled plans to launch a major space observatory in 2024 aimed at finding planets orbiting other stars, one of the new frontiers of astronomy. An unmanned probe named PLATO -- for PLAnetary Transits and Oscillations -- will look for telltale wobbles in starlight that point to an "exoplanet" moving in front of its host star, the European Space Agency (ESA) said. The six-year mission has a budget of 600 million euros ($821 million), ESA said. Equipped with 34 small telescopes and cameras, PLATO will scrutinise thousands of star systems.

Eutelsat satellite arrives in California for next Sea Launch mission

LONG BEACH, Calif. - A communications satellite built for France-based Eutelsat has arrived in California to be prepared for liftoff from Sea Launch AG's oceangoing rocket pad. The companies said Wednesday that the Eutelsat 3B spacecraft built by Airbus Defence and Space was flown from Toulouse to Long Beach Airport. It was then transported to a payload processing facility at the home port of the Sea Launch system's two vessels. The self-propelled launch platform and command ship will sail from Long Beach to the equatorial Pacific for a mid-April liftoff.

Eutelsat satellite arrives in California for next Sea Launch mission

LONG BEACH, Calif. - A communications satellite built for France-based Eutelsat has arrived in California to be prepared for liftoff from Sea Launch AG's oceangoing rocket pad. The companies said Wednesday that the Eutelsat 3B spacecraft built by Airbus Defence and Space was flown from Toulouse to Long Beach Airport. It was then transported to a payload processing facility at the home port of the Sea Launch system's two vessels. The self-propelled launch platform and command ship will sail from Long Beach to the equatorial Pacific for a mid-April liftoff.

From Stone Age to Space Age: bone pigment helps probe

A pigment once daubed on cave walls by prehistoric Man will help shield an unmanned probe that will fly close to the Sun, the European Space Agency (ESA) said Wednesday. Black calcium phosphate is being applied to the heatshield of Solar Orbiter, a Sun-monitoring probe due for launch in 2017, to help protect it from searing temperatures. The compound is made from charcoal from burnt bones, the same substance used in making the Chauvet Cave paintings in southern France 30,000 years ago, ESA said.

Australian astronomers discover oldest star in Universe

Sydney, Feb 10 (EFE).- Australian astronomers have discovered the oldest known star in the Universe, a heavenly body formed shortly after the Big Bang some 13.6 billion years ago, media reports said Monday. The star, known as SMSS J031300.36-670839.3, is in the Milky Way galaxy and some 6,000 light years from the Earth. Scientists plan to use the star to study the chemical composition of the earliest heavenly bodies, opening the way for new approaches in examining the origins of the Universe.

Ancient star helps scientists understand universe's origins

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australian astronomers have found the oldest known star in the universe, a discovery that may help to resolve a long-standing discrepancy between observations and predictions of the Big Bang billions of years ago. Dr Stefan Keller, lead researcher at the Australian National University Research School, told Reuters his team had seen the chemical fingerprint of the "first star". After 11 years of searching, the star was discovered using the SkyMapper telescope at the Siding Spring Observatory.

Drill developed by Canadian firm for moon would kick-start space mining industry

MONTREAL - A space drill developed by a firm based in Sudbury, Ont., could be boring for water on the moon in less than five years — if everything goes according to plan. It would also signal the start of the space mining industry. Deltion Innovations Ltd. has announced it's been awarded a contract by the Canadian Space Agency to advance the design of its "DESTIN" drill and then test it in a moon-like environment on Earth.
Syndicate content