Tag Archives: NASA

Curiosity’s finding of strange “floating spoon” on Mars

Martian Surface as seen by Mars rover Curiositys Mastcam on sol 1089 (Source: NASA/JPL-Caltech)(
Martian Surface as seen by Mars rover Curiositys Mastcam on sol 1089 (Source: NASA/JPL-Caltech)(

NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity has recently sent an interesting image of Mars showing a “floating spoon” type of thing on the planet. This floating spoon looks like hovering above a ridge with a shadow on the surface. Continue reading Curiosity’s finding of strange “floating spoon” on Mars

NASA’s contract with Boeing and SpaceX

NASA, Boeing and SpaceX has joined hands in a commercial crew program (Image: NASA)
NASA, Boeing and SpaceX has joined hands in a commercial crew program (Image: NASA)

NASA will work with two aeronautical firms, Boeing and SpaceX, in a taxi contract to take astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS) in the coming years to perform important science research and other related tasks on ISS. NASA is also thinking to use the same technologies to take astronauts to other places in space such as Mars and asteroids in the future.

This contract would reduce the U.S.’s dependence on Russia to take and bring astronauts to and from the space station. At this time, Russian Soyuz takes at least four astronauts of NASA in a year at the price of $71 million per seat. On the other hand, SpaceX noted the cost $20 million per seat in the future after the success of technological contract. Continue reading NASA’s contract with Boeing and SpaceX

Fascinating Rhythm: Light Pulses Illuminate a Rare Black Hole

This image of the galaxy Messier 82 is a composite of data from the Chandra X-Ray Observatory, the Hubble Space Telescope and the Spitzer Space Telescope. The intermediate-mass black hole M82 X-1 is the brightest object in the inset, at approximately 2 o’clock near the galaxy’s center. (Credit: NASA/H. Feng et al.)

Main Point:

UMD and NASA astronomers track an intermediate-mass black hole from syncopated flares of light.

Published in:

Nature

Study Further:

The universe has so many black holes that it’s impossible to count them all. There may be 100 million of these intriguing astral objects in our galaxy alone. Nearly all black holes fall into one of two classes: big, and colossal. Astronomers know that black holes ranging from about 10 times to 100 times the mass of our Sun are the remnants of dying stars, and that supermassive black holes, more than a million times the mass of the Sun, inhabit the centers of most galaxies. Continue reading Fascinating Rhythm: Light Pulses Illuminate a Rare Black Hole

First Discovery of an Earth-Sized Planet in the Habitable Zone

Main Points:

For the first time, an Earth-sized planet has been found in the habitable zone of its star.  This discovery not only proves the existence of worlds that might be similar to our own, but will undoubtedly shape future investigations of exoplanets that could have terrestrial surface environments.

Study Further:

The new-found body, orbiting the red dwarf star Kepler-186 and designated Kepler-186f, is the fifth — and outermost — world to be discovered in this system.  The results are described in an article appearing in Science.

“This is the first definitive Earth-sized planet found in the habitable zone around another star,” says lead author Elisa Quintana of the SETI Institute at NASA Ames Research Center.  “Finding such planets is a primary goal of the Kepler space telescope.  The star is a main-sequence M-dwarf, a very common type.  More than 70 percent of the hundreds of billions of stars in our galaxy are M-dwarfs.”

Continue reading First Discovery of an Earth-Sized Planet in the Habitable Zone

A Cross-Section of the Universe

Hubble’s cross-section of the cosmos (Credit: NASA/ESA)
Hubble’s cross-section of the cosmos (Credit: NASA/ESA)

Main Points:

An image of a galaxy cluster taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope gives a remarkable cross-section of the Universe, showing objects at different distances and stages in cosmic history. They range from cosmic near neighbours to objects seen in the early years of the Universe. The 14-hour exposure shows objects around a billion times fainter than can be seen with the naked eye.

Continue reading A Cross-Section of the Universe