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2012 March 14 - Angry Sun Erupting

2012 March 14 - Angry Sun Erupting
Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2012 March 14 Explanation: It's one of the baddest sunspot regions in years. Active Region 1429 may not only look, to some, like an angry bird -- it has thrown off some of the most powerful flares and coronal mass ejections of the current solar cycle. Related:  Humans Visit Space

10 Terrifying Planets You Don't Want To Visit Space Space exploration is a grand adventure. Its mystery has always captivated us and the inevitable discoveries to come will add to the many cosmological insights we already have. But let this list serve as a warning for any weary inter-solar travelers. Our planet maintains a high ratio of oxygen to carbon. On Neptune, one can find constant jet stream winds that whip around the planet at terrifying speeds. Nick-named Bellerophon, in honor of the Greek hero who tamed the winged horse Pegasus, this gas giant is over 150 times as massive as earth and made mostly of hydrogen and helium. The densest and most massive exoplanet to date is a world known as COROT-exo-3b. On Mars a dust storm can develop in a matter of hours and envelope the entire planet within a few days. Simply put, this planet is the hottest planet ever discovered. Jupiter’s atmosphere brews storms twice as wide as the Earth itself. (Note: Pluto is technically no longer classified as a planet). [Entry redacted.

SpaceShipTwo goes supersonic on first powered flight - space - 29 April 2013 Video: First rocket-powered flight of SpaceShipTwo Private joyrides and research trips to the edge of space just got closer to reality. Today Virgin Galactic's suborbital plane SpaceShipTwo completed its first rocket-powered test flight high over the Mojave desert. The commercial space plane, docked to its carrier mothership WhiteKnightTwo, took off from the Mojave Air and Space Port in southern California at 14.02 UTC Monday. The pair rose to an altitude of about 14 kilometres, and then the carrier ship released SpaceShipTwo. Moments later, test pilots Mark Stucky and Mike Alsbury triggered ignition of the rocket motor, which flared dramatically, prompting cheers and applause from spectators on the ground. The engine burn lasted for 16 seconds. Transformational flight Ultimately, the ship's rockets will fire for 70 seconds, allowing it to carry six passengers and two pilots to a maximum altitude of about 100 kilometres, the unofficial boundary between Earth's atmosphere and space.

2012 February 8 - Enceladus Backlit by Saturn Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2012 February 8 Explanation: This moon is shining by the light of its planet. Specifically, a large portion of Enceladus pictured above is illuminated primarily by sunlight first reflected from the planet Saturn. 100,000 Stars 9 November Live feeds for Olympic torch in Space Olympics Robert Z. Pearlman, 1 hour ago AP / Former Soviet cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, 76, speaks during torch relay celebrations in the Yaroslavl region, about 350 kilometers (217 miles) northeast of Moscow. Cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman to launch into space on a rocket's flame, took hold of the Olympic flame on Saturday, completing a leg of the 2014 Winter Games' torch relay. At the same time, an unlit torch to be used in the Olympic Games' opening ceremonies was being readied for its own trip, first to its launch site and then into space. In June 1963, Tereshkova lifted off on the Soviet Vostok 6 mission to become the first woman to fly into space. "Today we have a very important day," Tereshkova said, according to a summary published by the Olympic Winter Games organizing committee. "In space, we have to hide emotions far, far away because of the responsibility," Tereshkova remarked.

Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2016 April 15 Mercury and Crescent Moon Set Image Credit & Copyright: Miguel Claro (TWAN, Dark Sky Alqueva) Explanation: Innermost planet Mercury and a thin crescent Moon are never found far from the Sun in planet Earth's skies. Tomorrow's picture: Heliopause Electrostatic Rapid Transit System Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)NASA Official: Phillip Newman Specific rights apply.NASA Web Privacy Policy and Important NoticesA service of:ASD at NASA / GSFC& Michigan Tech.

Magnifying the Universe Embed this infographic on your site! <iframe width="500" height="323" scrolling="no" src=" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br />Copyright 2012. <a href=" the Universe</a> by <a href=" Sleuth</a>. The above is an interactive infographic. We have also developed a complimentary poster that you can view here: Sizes of the Universe poster. If you're technically inclined, here's a look at the references we used to construct these infographics: Facts About The Universe. Introduction: This interactive infographic from Number Sleuth accurately illustrates the scale of over 100 items within the observable universe ranging from galaxies to insects, nebulae and stars to molecules and atoms. While other sites have tried to magnify the universe, no one else has done so with real photographs and 3D renderings. How To Use: Credits:

Big News From Mars? Rover Scientists Mum For Now hide captionNASA's Mars rover Curiosity dug up five scoops of sand from a patch nicknamed "Rocknest." A suite of instruments called SAM analyzed Martian soil samples, but the findings have not yet been released. NASA/JPL-Caltech Scientists working on NASA's six-wheeled rover on Mars have a problem. But it's a good problem. They have some exciting new results from one of the rover's instruments. It's a bind scientists frequently find themselves in, because by their nature, scientists like to share their results. The exciting results are coming from an instrument in the rover called SAM. SAM is a kind of miniature chemistry lab. Grotzinger says they recently put a soil sample in SAM, and the analysis shows something remarkable. Grotzinger can see the pained look on my face as I wait, hoping he'll tell me what the heck he's found, but he's not providing any more information. So why doesn't Grotzinger want to share his exciting news? He did break down and tell his family.

2012 January 24 - January Aurora Over Norway Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2012 January 24 Explanation: What's that in the sky? An aurora. Scientist Claims Our Solar System Evicted A Planet So Earth Could Survive Colorado scientist David Nesvorny was running solar system evolutionary simulations recently when he realized that during 6,000 different simulations the Earth couldn’t survive during the system’s early years based on the current planetary count. Once Nesvorny added another planet to the system however Earth survived as expected. According to his work our solar system at one point had a ninth planet, a gas giant that was nudged out of the system billions of years ago to make room for Earth’s survival. According to the Mother Nature Network “gas giant number five” started off bound together with Saturn and Jupiter and pushed out lighter planets including Neptune and Uranus eventually to be pushed out of the system on its own after a collision with Jupiter. According to his work David said the planet was likely orbiting about 15 times further from the sun than our own planet.

Mars Discovery: NASA touts Curiosity data that points to historic discovery. Andrew Bodrov/ Curiosity is living up to its name. The NASA rover currently wheeling itself around Mars has apparently sent back some very interesting data from the Red Planet in the form of a soil sample that shows ... well, something. From the sounds of it, something big. But for now at least, that's all anyone is willing to say. Scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena are keeping their lips sealed for the time being while they run additional tests to make sure the discovery holds up. "This data is gonna be one for the history books," John Grotzinger, the rover mission's principal investigator, told NPR last week for a the buzz-inciting segment that aired today. Of course, the reason that NASA is keeping the potential find (mostly) under wraps is because it may turn out to be nothing but a false alarm, something that's happened before to the mission. So why doesn't Grotzinger want to share his exciting news?

2012 September 17 - A Solar Filament Erupts Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2012 September 17 Explanation: What's happened to our Sun? Moon water came from young wet Earth - space - 09 May 2013 The notion that all Earth's water was delivered by comets or asteroids has just taken a hit. Chemical analysis of lunar rocks suggests that Earth was born wet, and it held on to its water long enough to donate some to the moon. The moon is thought to have formed after a massive collision between the infant Earth and another proto-planet around 4.5 billion years ago. That changed when Alberto Saal of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, and colleagues studied rocks brought back from the Apollo 17 mission in the 1970s. "The question became, where did the water come from?" Water level Several research teams had already tackled the question by measuring the ratios of hydrogen and its heavier isotope, deuterium, in primitive rocks from Earth and the moon. "It becomes a fingerprint for where the water condensed," says Saal. Earlier work had suggested that the moon's water arrived on incoming comets. Impact rate Migrating Earth Journal reference: Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1235142

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