Related topics: nasa · stars · planets · solar system

Countdown starts for UA-led asteroid mission

(Phys.org) —With OSIRIS-REx, the first spacecraft destined to return a sample from a primitive asteroid, still taking shape, the mission's University of Arizona-led team started the official countdown clock on Monday at ...

Nearing one thousand exoplanets

A quiet milestone in modern astronomy may soon come to pass. As of today, The Extrasolar Planets Encyclopedia lists a current tally of 998 extrasolar planets across 759 planetary systems. And although various tabulations ...

Astronomers see misaligned planets in distant system

Using data from NASA's Kepler space telescope, an international team of astronomers has discovered a distant planetary system featuring multiple planets orbiting at a severe tilt to their host star.

Dawn reality-checks telescope studies of asteroids

(Phys.org) —Tantalized by images from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and ground-based data, scientists thought the giant asteroid Vesta deserved a closer look. They got a chance to do that in 2011 and 2012, when NASA's Dawn ...

How engineers revamped Spitzer to probe exoplanets

(Phys.org) —Now approaching its 10th anniversary, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has evolved into a premier observatory for an endeavor not envisioned in its original design: the study of worlds around other stars, called ...

Moon is younger than first thought

Improved age data for the Moon suggests that it is much younger than previously believed according to scientists presenting at a Royal Society discussion meeting entitled Origins of the Moon this week (23 September). Professor ...

New NASA rocket faces delays

The debut launch of NASA's next big rocket - now slated for 2017 - likely will be delayed a year or two because the agency simply does not have the money to finish the rocket and its accompanying crew capsule on time, a top ...

Phaethon confirmed as rock comet by STEREO vision

The Sun-grazing asteroid, Phaethon, has betrayed its true nature by showing a comet-like tail of dust particles blown backwards by radiation pressure from the Sun. Unlike a comet, however, Phaethon's tail doesn't arise through ...

Inflatable antennae could give CubeSats greater reach

The future of satellite technology is getting small—about the size of a shoebox, to be exact. These so-called "CubeSats," and other small satellites, are making space exploration cheaper and more accessible: The minuscule ...

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