July 15, 2013 |
Once again, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has spotted a new moon in the deep reaches of the solar system - this time in orbit around the gas giant Neptune. And once again, the moon was identified by Mark Showalter, a planetary astronomer with the SETI Institute in Mountain View, Calif. But no, “Star Trek” star William Shatner will not renew his campaign to have a moon in the solar system named Vulcan, in honor Mr. Spock's home planet. “Yes, I have heard about the new Neptune moon, but the naming conventions are that they are named after water deities from Greek Mythology,” Shatner tweeted Monday after NASA announced the discovery.
December 6, 2012 |
It's not just the stars that twinkle in the dark of night. The Earth is twinkling too. NASA has released new, spectacular images of our planet at night, from a satellite orbiting 512 miles above the Earth's surface. The agency stitched some of these images together to create a composite image of the entire planet. They call it the Black Marble. But the cobweb of city lights that stretch over the planet is just one of the images that the super sensitive light sensor captured. It also sent back images of Auroras over Antarctica, volcanoes and natural gas flares.
May 10, 2013 |
The sun is ramping up toward solar maximum -- the white-hot peak of activity in an 11-year cycle -- and NASA has been snapping images of the phenomenon every 12 seconds for three years. The space agency put together a three-minute video showing images taken by the Solar Dynamic Observatory since spring 2010. As the Los Angeles Times' Deborah Netburn reported last month, the NASA video stitches together two SDO images per day over the three-year period. Alex Young, a heliophysicist at Goddard Space Flight Center, narrates the video to point up some of the sun's best-of moments in that time frame.
November 21, 2013 |
Is there life beyond Earth in our solar system? If there is, NASA's new chief scientist, Ellen Stofan, would like to find it. "If I had an unlimited budget, I would really be probing that question of life, because we know what the questions are, and we know what the destinations are," she said. Stofan was at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Wednesday, attending meetings and speaking with the press. She landed NASA's top scientist job in August, but this was not her first visit to the campus in La Canada Flintridge.
October 31, 2013 |
With her long blond ponytail floating above her inside the International Space Station, astronaut Karen Nyberg calmly explains the challenges of quilting in weightlessness. "Now that I've tried my hand sewing in space," she said in a video released Thursday by NASA, "I can say one thing with certainty: It's tricky. " As if being a mechanical engineer and astronaut isn't significant enough, the avid quilter brought sewing supplies including fabric, scissors, thread, five needles (but no pins)
August 6, 2013 |
Charles used to work at NASA and wants to stay in touch with the space program via NASA TV, the cable channel paid for by tax dollars and provided free to telecom companies. Turns out, though, that his AT&T U-verse package doesn't include NASA TV. To receive the channel, he was told, he'd have to pay for a more expensive programming package. More videos from Ask Laz Charles' question: Why should NASA TV be considered a premium channel considering that taxpayers have already paid for it?
May 2, 2013 |
NASA wants to send haikus to Mars, and you - yes, you! - might be just the poet for the job. The space agency plans to launch a spacecraft to study the upper layers of the Red Planet's atmosphere in November. But before the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission (known as MAVEN) blasts off, NASA is asking the public to submit their names for a DVD that will be loaded onto the Martian satellite. If you missed your chance at getting your name engraved on microchips on the Mars rover Curiosity (along with the names of 1.2 million other people)
September 12, 2013 |
Having trouble getting excited about NASA's planned mission to redirect an asteroid? Maybe William Gerstenmaier can help. "Turn off your logical side and turn on your touchy-feely side, the one you almost never use," Gerstenmaier, associate administrator for NASA's Human Exploration and Operations Directorate, told attendees of an aeronautics and astronautics conference Wednesday in San Diego. "Then jump up and down and do some break-dancing. We're going to grab a space rock and we're going to move it!"
October 15, 2013 |
A quirky habit of German insomniacs and "chill-out" music fans has come to world attention thanks to the U.S. government shutdown. "Space Night," a nearly 20-year-old late-night broadcast by Bavarian Television, provides a music-sharing platform against a backdrop of NASA's video feed from the International Space Station. But the 15-day-old U.S. government shutdown has idled the NASA archivists responsible for relaying the imagery beyond Mission Control, cutting off fresh backdrops to mix with the music for "Space Night" broadcasts that were to have launched a new season Nov. 1. NASA archivists were put on unpaid leave at the start of October, when 700,000 government workers whose jobs weren't deemed essential to defense and security were furloughed until the contentious U.S. Congress passes a budget for the new fiscal year.
April 8, 2013 |
The search for Earth-like planets, and ultimately life beyond Earth, is about to get a boost: In 2017, NASA will send a satellite called TESS into orbit with the goal of finding planets in our solar neighborhood that may be hospitable to life. NASA's Kepler mission has been scanning a small portion of the sky since 2009 in search of planets that orbit stars other than our own, but the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite mission will be scanning...