The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research. Since February 2006, NASA's mission statement has been to "pioneer the future in space exploration, scientific discovery and aeronautics research." On September 14, 2011, NASA announced that it had selected the design of a new Space Launch System that it said would take the agency's astronauts farther into space than ever before and provide the cornerstone for future human space exploration efforts by the U.S. NASA was established by the National Aeronautics and Space Act on July 29, 1958, replacing its predecessor, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). The agency became operational on October 1, 1958. U.S. space exploration efforts have since been led by NASA, including the Apollo moon-landing missions, the Skylab space station, and later the Space Shuttle. Currently, NASA is supporting the International Space Station and is overseeing the development of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle and Commercial Crew vehicles.

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New Horizons imagery reveals small, frozen lake on Pluto

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft spied several features on Pluto that offer evidence of a time millions or billions of years ago when – thanks to much higher pressure in Pluto's atmosphere and warmer conditions on the surface ...

Ten-engine electric plane prototype takes off

A team at NASA's Langley Research Center is developing a concept of a battery-powered plane that has 10 engines and can take off like a helicopter and fly efficiently like an aircraft. The prototype, called Greased Lightning ...

NASA to conduct unprecedented twin experiment

Consider a pair of brothers, identical twins. One gets a job as an astronaut and rockets into space. The other gets a job as an astronaut, too, but on this occasion he decides to stay home. After a year in space, the traveling ...

Breaks observed in Mars rover wheel treads

A routine check of the aluminum wheels on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover has found two small breaks on the rover's left middle wheel—the latest sign of wear and tear as the rover continues its journey, now approaching the ...

Curiosity rover finds active, ancient organic chemistry on Mars

(Phys.org)—NASA's Mars Curiosity rover has measured a tenfold spike in methane, an organic chemical, in the atmosphere around it and detected other organic molecules in a rock-powder sample collected by the robotic laboratory's ...

NASA Learns More About Interstellar Visitor 'Oumuamua

In November 2017, scientists pointed NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope toward the object known as 'Oumuamua—the first known interstellar object to visit our solar system. The infrared Spitzer was one of many telescopes pointed ...

Jupiter's north pole unlike anything encountered in solar system

NASA's Juno spacecraft has sent back the first-ever images of Jupiter's north pole, taken during the spacecraft's first flyby of the planet with its instruments switched on. The images show storm systems and weather activity ...

New Horizons wakes for historic Kuiper Belt flyby

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft is back "awake" and being prepared for the farthest planetary encounter in history – a New Year's Day 2019 flyby of the Kuiper Belt object nicknamed Ultima Thule.

Cassini sees sunny seas on Titan

(Phys.org) —As it soared past Saturn's large moon Titan recently, NASA's Cassini spacecraft caught a glimpse of bright sunlight reflecting off hydrocarbon seas.

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