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The Lead

NASA's Moon-orbiting Robot Crashes

April 18, 2014 8:32 am | by Associated Press, Marcia Dunn | News | Comments

NASA's small moon-orbiting spacecraft LADEE is no more. Flight controllers confirmed early Friday that LADEE crashed into the back side of the moon.

Observatories Confirm First Earth-sized Potentially Habitable Planet

April 18, 2014 7:00 am | by Gemini Observatory | News | Comments

The first Earth-sized exoplanet orbiting within the habitable zone of another star has been...

Meteorites Reveal Clues to Mars' Early Atmosphere

April 17, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Maryland | News | Comments

Geologists who analyzed 40 meteorites that fell to Earth from Mars have unlocked secrets of the...

Saturn’s Rings Shed Light on Moon Formation

April 16, 2014 7:00 am | by Queen Mary Univ. of London | News | Comments

Disturbances at the very edge of Saturn's outer bright A ring, which result from a small...

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Martian Soil Can Yield Fruit

April 15, 2014 1:04 pm | by Wageningen Univ. & Research Centre | News | Comments

The soil on Mars may be suitable for cultivating food crops. In a unique pilot experiment, a scientist tested the growth of 14 plant varieties on artificial Mars soil over 50 days. To his surprise, the plants grew well; some even blossomed.

Image of the Week: How to Wash Eyes in Space

April 15, 2014 7:00 am | by ESA | News | Comments

Imagine you are an astronaut on the ISS and a fleck of dust gets in your eye. How do you wash it out? Engineers came up with the idea seen in this picture.

Rocket Launch a Go Despite Computer Woes

April 14, 2014 12:00 pm | by Associated Press, Marcia Dunn | News | Comments

The ISS is about to get some fresh groceries and material for an urgent repair job. An unmanned SpaceX rocket is on the launch pad at Cape Canaveral even though a critical backup computer failed outside the space station Friday, prompting safety concerns.

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Space Study to Measure Gravity's Impact on Plant Cells

April 11, 2014 12:00 pm | by Purdue Univ. | News | Comments

An experiment, which will test how plant cells sense and respond to different levels of gravity, is scheduled to launch aboard the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral on Monday.

Update: Space Artifact Auction Does Better Than Anticipated

April 10, 2014 12:00 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

An Apollo 11 lunar surface checklist sheet was among the coveted items— sold at an auction of space exploration artifacts— that fetched for more than the pre-sale estimate.

Western Hemisphere Gets Front-row Seat for Lunar Eclipse

April 9, 2014 7:00 am | by Associated Press, Marcia Dunn | News | Comments

Next Tuesday morning, April 15, 2014, the moon will be eclipsed by Earth's shadow. This total lunar eclipse will be visible across the Western Hemisphere.

Method Precisely Deduces Age of Stars, Pinpoints Events

April 8, 2014 7:00 am | by The Australian National Univ. | News | Comments

Reconstructing the history of our Galaxy has just become a whole lot easier, thanks to a team of international astronomers. By examining both the light and sound waves from stars, they developed a more precise way to deduce the ages of stars and pinpoint when the Galaxy’s big events happened.

Space Auction Has 'Dusty' Item

April 7, 2014 7:00 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Everything from American and Russian spacesuits to a moon dust-covered strap from the Apollo 12 mission will be available to space history buffs at auction in New York City this week.

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Disaster-monitoring Satellite Launched Successfully

April 4, 2014 12:00 pm | by Associated Press, David Rising | News | Comments

The ESA says it has successfully launched the first in a series of satellites that will form the nucleus of its new Copernicus monitoring system, which is aimed at providing better and quicker information about natural disasters and other catastrophes.

Ground Deformation Linked to Volcanic Eruption

April 4, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Bristol | Videos | Comments

Using satellite imagery to monitor which volcanoes are deforming provides statistical evidence of their eruption potential, according to a new study. ESA’s Sentinel satellite, launched this week, should allow scientists to test this link in greater detail and eventually develop a forecast system for all volcanoes, including those that are remote and inaccessible.

Saturn’s Moon Has Vast Ocean

April 3, 2014 3:06 pm | by Associated Press, Marcia Dunn | News | Comments

Scientists have uncovered a vast ocean beneath the icy surface of Saturn's little moon, Enceladus. Researchers made the discovery using Cassini, a NASA-European spacecraft still exploring Saturn and its rings 17 years after its launch from Cape Canaveral.

NASA Cuts Russian Ties Except on ISS

April 3, 2014 8:10 am | by Associated Press, Alicia Chang | News | Comments

After insisting that space relations wouldn't be altered by earthly politics, NASA announced it was severing ties with Russia except for the International Space Station.

Experts Issue Ethics Guidelines for NASA’s Next-Gen Missions

April 3, 2014 7:00 am | by Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics | News | Comments

Health and ethics experts have issued principles and guidelines to aid NASA in decision-making for longer, higher-risk human spaceflights.

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'Geologic Clock' Helped Determine Moon’s Age

April 3, 2014 7:00 am | by Southwest Research Institute | News | Comments

An international team of planetary scientists determined that the Moon formed nearly 100 million years after the start of the solar system. This conclusion is based on measurements from the interior of the Earth combined with computer simulations of the protoplanetary disk from which the Earth and other terrestrial planets formed.

Mineral Study May Have Caused Overestimation of Moon Water

April 2, 2014 7:00 am | by UCLA | News | Comments

The amount of water present in the moon may have been overestimated by scientists studying the mineral apatite, according to a team who created a computer model to accurately predict how apatite would have crystallized from cooling bodies of lunar magma early in the moon's history.

April Has Busy Sky: Eclipse, Opposition, Shower

April 2, 2014 7:00 am | by NASA | Videos | Comments

Mars, the protoplanet Vesta and the dwarf planet Ceres reach opposition this month, wherein they are directly opposite the sun. Also in April, a lunar eclipse will be visible in North and South America and the Pacific and the Lyrid meteor shower will peak.

Probe to Study How Sun, Planets Interact

April 1, 2014 7:00 am | by KTH Royal Institute of Technology | News | Comments

Beginning this year, NASA will launch four satellites equipped with technology to study the microphysics of magnetic reconnection— the fundamental process that happens during such solar atmosphere events as solar flares and coronal mass ejections.

Image of the Week: Cosmic Whirlpool

April 1, 2014 7:00 am | by NASA | News | Comments

Perhaps the original spiral nebula, this large galaxy with well-defined spiral structure is cataloged as NGC 5194. Its spiral arms and dust lanes clearly sweep in front of its companion galaxy, NGC 5195.

'Cosmic Barometer' May Reveal Universe's Violent Past

March 31, 2014 12:31 pm | by Imperial College London | News | Comments

Researchers have developed a method for analyzing the pressure experienced by tiny samples of organic material that may have been ejected from dying stars before making a long journey through the cosmos.

Mars, Earth Having Close Encounter

March 31, 2014 7:00 am | by NASA | Videos | Comments

Earth and Mars are converging for a close encounter. As March gives way to April, the distance between the two planets is shrinking by about 300 km every minute.

Mars Rover Prototype Unveiled

March 28, 2014 7:00 am | by Associated Press, Gregory Katz | News | Comments

The European Mars rover, unveiled at a "Mars Yard" testing ground in Britain this week, is designed to drill beneath the surface of the Red Planet searching for signs of life.

Phenomena Sightings Confirm Space Weather Models

March 27, 2014 12:28 pm | by Univ. of Cambridge | Videos | Comments

Scientists have for the first time witnessed the mechanism behind explosive energy releases in the Sun’s atmosphere, confirming new theories about how solar flares are created.

Scientists Solve Celestial Riddle, Shed Light on Earth’s Fate

March 27, 2014 7:00 am | by Univ. of Leicester | News | Comments

It has been known that many hot white dwarfs atmospheres, essentially of pure hydrogen or pure helium, are contaminated by other elements– like carbon, silicon and iron. Now, after decades of questions, researchers have learned the origins of these elements.

NASA, JAXA Release First Images from Weather Satellite

March 27, 2014 7:00 am | by NASA | Videos | Comments

NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency have released the first images captured by their newest Earth-observing satellite, the Global Precipitation Measurement Core Observatory, which launched into space Feb. 27.

Russian, U.S. Relationships Still Good on ISS

March 26, 2014 12:00 pm | by Associated Press, Nataliya Vasilyeva | News | Comments

A software glitch on a Russian spacecraft heading to the International Space Station has delayed the arrival of three astronauts, including an American. NASA says the crew was in no danger, and the U.S.-Russia space partnership was strong despite tensions over Ukraine.

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