Space & Exploration

Meet the Comet Interceptor. It’ll Wait Patiently In Space for a Comet, Then Pounce On It

Meet the Comet Interceptor. It’ll Wait Patiently In Space for a Comet, Then Pounce On It

The ESA has announced a new mission to explore a comet. The Comet Interceptor mission will have a spacecraft wait in space until a pristine comet approaches the inner Solar System. Then it will make a bee line for it, and do some ground-breaking science.

Who Wants to be a Trillionaire? Mission to Psyche Could Uncover Tons of Precious Metals!

Who Wants to be a Trillionaire? Mission to Psyche Could Uncover Tons of Precious Metals!

It has been said that within the next quarter century, the world’s first trillionaires will emerge. It is also predicted that much of their wealth will stem from asteroid mining, a burgeoning space industry where minerals and volatile compounds will be harvested from Near-Earth Asteroids. This industry promises to flood the market with ample supplies of precious metals like gold, silver and platinum.

How A Historic Jupiter Comet Impact Led to Planetary Defense

How A Historic Jupiter Comet Impact Led to Planetary Defense

Twenty-five years ago, humanity first witnessed a collision between a comet and a planet. From July 16 to 22, 1994, enormous pieces of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 (SL9), discovered just a year prior, crashed into Jupiter over several days, creating huge, dark scars in the planet’s atmosphere and lofting superheated plumes into its stratosphere.

NASA's Revolutionary Dragonfly Will Fly Around Titan Looking for Origins, Signs of Life!

NASA's Revolutionary Dragonfly Will Fly Around Titan Looking for Origins, Signs of Life!

NASA has announced that our next destination in the solar system is the unique, richly organic world Titan. Advancing our search for the building blocks of life, the Dragonfly mission will fly multiple sorties to sample and examine sites around Saturn’s icy moon.

Accelerating exoplanet discovery using chemical fingerprints of stars

Accelerating exoplanet discovery using chemical fingerprints of stars

Stars are born when huge clouds of dust and gas collapse in on themselves and ignite. These clouds are made up of raw elements, like oxygen and titanium, and each cloud has a unique composition that imprints on the star. And within the stellar afterbirth – from the material that didn’t find its way into the star – planets are formed.

Lakes on Titan Might Have Exotic Crystals Encrusted Around Their Shores

Lakes on Titan Might Have Exotic Crystals Encrusted Around Their Shores

Titan is a mysterious, strange place for human eyes. It’s a frigid world, with seas of liquid hydrocarbons, and a structure made up of layers of water, different kinds of ice, and a core of hydrous silicates. It may even have cryovolcanoes. Adding to the odd nature of Saturn’s largest moon is the presence of exotic crystals on the shores of its hydrocarbon lakes.

From miniature satellites to giant sun shields – the extreme technology transforming space engineering

From miniature satellites to giant sun shields – the extreme technology transforming space engineering

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the first Apollo moon landing. This was possible thanks to an extraordinary acceleration of space technology. Within a remarkably short period of time leading up to the event, engineers had mastered rocket propulsion, on-board computing and space operations, partially thanks to an essentially unlimited budget.

Hubble is the Ultimate Multitasker: Discovering Asteroids While it’s Doing Other Observations

Hubble is the Ultimate Multitasker: Discovering Asteroids While it’s Doing Other Observations

It looks like a poster of the famous Hubble Deep Field, marked with white streaks by a child, or put away carelessly and scratched in the process. But it’s not. The white streaks aren’t accidents; they’re the paths of asteroids.

Curiosity Sniffs a Spike in Methane. Could it be a Sign of Life?

Curiosity Sniffs a Spike in Methane. Could it be a Sign of Life?

Since it landed on Mars in 2012, one of the main scientific objectives of the Curiosity rover has been finding evidence of past (or even present) life on the Red Planet. In 2014, the rover may have accomplished this very thing when it detected a tenfold increase in atmospheric methane in its vicinity and found traces of complex organic molecules in drill samples while poking around in the Gale Crater.

Hubble Finds Tiny “Electric Soccer Balls” in Space, Helps Solve Interstellar Mystery

Hubble Finds Tiny “Electric Soccer Balls” in Space, Helps Solve Interstellar Mystery

Scientists using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have confirmed the presence of electrically-charged molecules in space shaped like soccer balls, shedding light on the mysterious contents of the interstellar medium (ISM) – the gas and dust that fills interstellar space.

Two Earth-Like Worlds Found Orbiting a Red Dwarf Only 12.5 Light-Years Away!

Two Earth-Like Worlds Found Orbiting a Red Dwarf Only 12.5 Light-Years Away!

In the past few decades, there has been an explosion in the number of planets discovered beyond our Solar System. With over 4,000 confirmed exoplanets to date, the process has gradually shifted from discovery towards characterization. This consists of using refined techniques to determine just how likely a planet is to be habitable.

Explainer: What Is an Atomic Clock?

Explainer: What Is an Atomic Clock?

The clock is ticking: A technology demonstration that could transform the way humans explore space is nearing its target launch date of June 24, 2019. Developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, the Deep Space Atomic Clock is a serious upgrade to the satellite-based atomic clocks that, for example, enable the GPS on your phone.