Video: The making of the largest 3-D map of the universe

DESI, the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument, will mobilize 5,000 swiveling robots – each one pointing a thin strand of fiber-optic cable – to gather the light from about 35 million galaxies.

Image: 3-D-printed satellite imager design

Weirdly organic in appearance, this prototype is the first outcome of an ESA project to develop, manufacture and demonstrate an optical instrument for space with 3D printing.

NASA tests ICESat-2's laser aim

Close enough doesn't cut it in the spacecraft assembly cleanroom at NASA Goddard's Space Flight Center, where engineers are building an elevation-measuring instrument to fly on the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite-2 ...

OPALS boosts space-to-ground optical communications research

Ever wonder why stars seem to twinkle? This effect is caused by variations in the density of our atmosphere that cause blurring in light coming from space. It's pretty for stargazing, but a challenge for space-to-ground communications.

Instrument housing produced with 3-D printed mould

3D printing offers engineers various ways to construct hardware that simply could not be built in any other manner – such as this single-piece casing to house an optical instrument for Earth observations.

To touch the microcosmos

What if you could reach through a microscope to touch and feel the microscopic structures under the lens? In a breakthrough that may usher in a new era in the exploration of the worlds that are a million times smaller than ...

James Webb Telescope's last backbone component completed

( —Assembly of the backbone of NASA's James Webb Space Telescope, the primary mirror backplane support structure, is a step closer to completion with the recent addition of the backplane support frame, a fixture ...

Lightest exoplanet imaged so far?

( —A team of astronomers using ESO's Very Large Telescope has imaged a faint object moving near a bright star. With an estimated mass of four to five times that of Jupiter, it would be the least massive planet ...

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