As solar wind blows, our heliosphere balloons

What happens when the solar wind suddenly starts to blow significantly harder? According to two recent studies, the boundaries of our entire solar system balloon outward—and an analysis of particles rebounding off of its ...

The case of the relativistic particles solved with NASA missions

Encircling Earth are two enormous rings—called the Van Allen radiation belts—of highly energized ions and electrons. Various processes can accelerate these particles to relativistic speeds, which endanger spacecraft unlucky ...

Tiny satellite's first global map of ice clouds

Looking at Earth from the International Space Station, astronauts see big, white clouds spreading across the planet. They cannot distinguish a gray rain cloud from a puffy white cloud. While satellites can see through many ...

X-ray navigation considered for possible CubeSat mission

Now that NASA has shown the viability of autonomous X-ray navigation in space, a team led by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory plans to include the technology on a proposed CubeSat mission to the Moon, and NASA engineers ...

Stellar thief is the surviving companion to a supernova

Seventeen years ago, astronomers witnessed a supernova go off 40 million light-years away in the galaxy called NGC 7424, located in the southern constellation Grus, the Crane. Now, in the fading afterglow of that explosion, ...

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