Electric solar wind sail could make bidirectional manned Mars flights economically feasible
The E-sail is a novel propellantless technology that was invented in Finland in 2006. The E-sail utilises long, charged tethers to convert natural solar wind momentum flux into spacecraft thrust.
Japan has floating solar power plants in Hyogo Prefecture
Why do measurements of the gravitational constant vary so much?
Titan's atmosphere useful in study of hazy exoplanets
With more than a thousand confirmed planets outside of our solar system, astronomers are attempting to identify the atmospheres of these distant bodies to determine if they could possibly host life.
In the realm of eternal ice
On 6 November 2010, the light of the star known as NOMAD1 0856-0015072 in the Cetus constellation dimmed. What had happened? A dwarf planet at the edge of the solar system had moved in front of the distant ...
Solar plane Pacific-crossing a 'human challenge'
The pilot set to attempt an ambitious crossing of the Pacific Ocean in a solar-powered plane said on Wednesday that the flight will not only test the aircraft but his own endurance as well.
Solar plane lands in east China ahead of most ambitious leg
Solar Impulse 2 landed late Tuesday in the Chinese city of Nanjing, finishing the sixth stage of its landmark 12-leg quest to circumnavigate the globe powered only by the sun.
Electron trapping harnessed to make light sensors
Traps. Whether you're squaring off against the Empire or trying to wring electricity out of sunlight, they're almost never a good thing. But sometimes you can turn that trap to your advantage. A team from ...
Engineering team invents a camera that powers itself
A research team led by Shree K. Nayar, T.C. Chang Professor of Computer Science at Columbia Engineering, has invented a prototype video camera that is the first to be fully self-powered—it can produce an ...
Mercury MESSENGER nears epic mission end
A spacecraft that carries a sensor built at the University of Michigan is about to crash into the planet closest to the sun—just as NASA intended.
Irradiating formamide with meteorite dust can lead to synthesis of prebiotic compounds
Solution-grown nanowires make the best lasers
Take a material that is a focus of interest in the quest for advanced solar cells. Discover a "freshman chemistry level" technique for growing that material into high-efficiency, ultra-small lasers. The result, ...
Planet formation relied on sweeping up of small glassy beads, new model suggests
New research proposes that chondrules, small glassy beads that make up the bulk of the most primitive meteorites, played a crucial role in the formation of planets. Simulations developed by scientists at ...
Major advance in artificial photosynthesis poses win/win for the environment
A potentially game-changing breakthrough in artificial photosynthesis has been achieved with the development of a system that can capture carbon dioxide emissions before they are vented into the atmosphere ...