Astronaut.com 7 Jul 2018, 12:43 UTC In the coming decades, NASA and other space agencies hope to mount some ambitious missions to other planets in our Solar System. In addition to studying Mars and the outer Solar System in greater detail, NASA intends to send a mission to Venus to learn more about the planet’s past. This will include studying Venus’ upper atmosphere to determine if the planet once had liquid water (and maybe even life) on its surface.
Scientific American 6 Jul 2018, 10:45 UTC Stepping out of a capsule no bigger than a modest home kitchen, the four-person crew of NASA’s latest Human Exploration Research Analog study “returned” to Earth last month after a 45-day mission to fictional asteroid Geographos. Although the capsule never actually left NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, the mission’s results could shape how the space agency’s astronauts someday handle the isolation, confinement and sleep deprivation likely to occur during interplanetary travel.
ESO Blog 6 Jul 2018, 10:00 UTC Since the Paranal Observatory opened in May 1998, it has become one of the most productive observatories in the world. The observatory houses the Very Large Telescope (VLT), ESO’s premier observatory consisting of four large telescopes and four smaller partner telescopes. For its 20th year in operation, we caught up with Steffen Mieske, Head of Science Operations at Paranal, to learn more about the past, present, and future of the observatory.
Astronomy Now 5 Jul 2018, 06:00 UTC Einstein’s understanding of gravity, as outlined in his general theory of relativity, predicts that all objects fall at the same rate, regardless of their mass or composition. This theory has passed test after test here on Earth, but does it still hold true for some of the most massive and dense objects in the known universe, an aspect of nature known as the Strong Equivalence Principle?
Scientific American 4 Jul 2018, 15:00 UTC New observations reveal an infant alien world coalescing from gas and dust around a young star. A stunning, first-of-its-kind photo shows a huge, newfound alien world taking shape in the disk of gas and dust surrounding a young star. The image is the first confirmed direct observation of such a young exoplanet.
Space Fellowship 3 Jul 2018, 22:26 UTC The International Space Station crew from the United States, Russia and Germany is going into the Fourth of July holiday unpacking new research gear from the SpaceX Dragon cargo craft. The six Expedition 56 crew members also conducted advanced space research and orbital lab maintenance today.
io9 Space 3 Jul 2018, 16:25 UTC You might be aware of one of Uranus’ complexities: It spins on its side, and its moons orbit on that same rotated plane. New evidence strengthens the case that Uranus was smashed in a giant collision, resulting in its sideways orientation to its orbital plane and perhaps explaining some of the planet’s other mysteries.
Bad Astronomy 2 Jul 2018, 23:32 UTC he Dawn spacecraft is a wonder. Launched in 2007, it took a long spiral outwards from Earth (with an assist by the gravity of Mars) to head out into the asteroid belt, where it parked itself in orbit around the protoplanet Vesta for a year. Then it headed away to the even larger protoplanet Ceres, where it has been since March 2015.