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Saturday, April 19, 2014 home site map printer-friendly
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space science

When you think of astronauts, you don’t typically think of women. However, the history of women in space has recently hit the 50-year mark. [read more...]
Nothing sounds more like science fiction than a box that creates an entire meal from a gel-like substance, and then literally prints it out. As crazy as it seems, scientists believe that contraptions like this may actually exist in the next 20 years. [read more...]
Curiosity, NASA’s most advanced rover yet, landed on Mars in August 2012 and continues to survey the planet today. The car-sized rover weighs a ton and contains cutting-edge technology, enabling it to explore Mars’ rocky terrains. Since its landing, the rover has harvested stunning photographs and evidence that points to the existence of microbial life. [read more...]
An eclipse is a phenomenon when the sun or moon is hidden from sight, of which there are three types. [read more...]
On a clear and crisp evening reporters from Simpson Street Free Press set out for the UW-Madison campus. There, we got a chance to visit the Washburn Observatory and catch a glimpse of some well-known planets in the night skies. [read more...]
Many people are familiar with the Big Bang Theory: a large explosion created the entire universe. However, most people are unfamiliar with how matter was formed. Scientists have theorized that the key to this puzzle is the Higgs particle. [read more...]
Recent images taken by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter show dark lines in the mid-latitudes of Mars’ southern hemisphere. Scientists think flows of salt-water may have formed these lines. These lines, however, are very rare. Only seven have been observed. They vary from half a meter to five meters, and could potentially have carried thousands of gallons of water. [read more...]
Although there is a difference between asteroids and meteoroids, both are solid bodies in space. A meteoroid is a small piece of space debris, usually made up of rock or iron. This meteoroid is re-labeled a meteorite when it enters a planet’s atmosphere. An asteroid is described as a larger, solid body of rock that orbits around a star. [read more...]
The mystery of Saturn’s rings has puzzled humans for centuries. During the 20th century, many astronomers theorized that Saturn’s moons had years ago collided with each other, or with an asteroid, leaving behind debris. This debris then formed Saturn’s characteristic rings. If this hypothesis were true, however, rock particles like those that make up Saturn’s moons would be found in its rings. These moons are about half rock and half ice. More recently, scientists discovered that the rings are 95 percent made of ice. In other words, there is much less rock in the rings than in the moons. [read more...]
About 4.5 billion years ago, a Mars-sized asteroid collided into the newly molten Earth. The powerful impact threw scattered debris into space. Over millions of years this rubble formed a roughly-shaped sphere that started to orbit the Earth. Today we call this sphere Earth’s moon. [read more...]
Astronomers have found and labeled “Goldilocks” planet. [read more...]
Scientists searching for extraterrestrial life once faced amused skepticism. But according to Seth Shostak, senior astronomer at the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Life (SETI) Institute of California, the general concensus is shifting. [read more...]
Astronomers at the Harvard-Smithsonian center for astrophysics recently discovered a blue star that is running quickly through the galaxy came from the center of the Milky Way. Scientists now think this strange star began its journey about a million years ago. [read more...]
Of the 118 known elements, six are essential for life: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus and sulfur— or so scientists thought. [read more...]
Molten lava, volcanic rock and just volcanoes themselves are considered among Earth’s natural wonders. But a new discovery half way across our solar indicated a different kind of volcano exists on a giant moon called Titan. [read more...]
Fire is caused when oxygen reacts with another substance, like carbon. The result of that chemical reaction is known as combustion. But there is no air in space, so how does the sun burn? Well, the sun doesn’t really “burn” like a campfire, it actually boils. Its atoms crash into each other, which creates a unique process called nuclear fusion. [read more...]
Although star formations have been in existence much longer than human beings, little is understood about them. Astronomer Deidre Hunter has been studying small galaxies known as dwarf irregular galaxies for the past 17 years. She and her team at Lowell Observatory hope to shed some light on these mysterious stars. [read more...]
The Hayabusa explorer is a Japanese space probe that was launched in 2003. Its goal was to bring back asteroid samples that might provide clues to the evolution of our Solar System. [read more...]
Since the first Viking missions to Mars in 1976, the mysterious Red Planet has been explored many times. Initially, the possibility of water on Mars intrigued scientists. Now that researchers have confirmed the existence of water, scientists are pushing to find out if life too, exists there. This curiosity has compelled NASA to plan an elaborate mission to investigate the rock and soil of Mars. [read more...]
There have been many news reports lately about the Obama administration’s decision to end NASA’s role in manned space flights. Instead, private companies will be encouraged to take leadership in the area. [read more...]
Stars are everywhere in the universe. They can be seen all over the night sky. But how do they start? How do they end? The mysteries of the skies have fascinated astronomers for generations. [read more...]
In late April, President Obama outlined a new direction for NASA that would significantly alter our country’s space exploration program. [read more...]
William Borucki of the NASA Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California recently made a fascinating discovery. While using the powerful Kepler space telescope, Borucki and his team discovered five new and unusual planets orbiting nearby stars. [read more...]
We all have a sense of wonder. It’s part of what makes us humans. For many of us this sense of wonder leads to questions about how, when, and why the universe began. One explanation to this mystery is the Big Bang theory. [read more...]
An asteroid is a rocky, metallic object in the sky that orbits the sun. An asteroid belt is filled with many kinds of asteroids whose shapes have been formed by years of collisions. [read more...]
You have undoubtedly heard of hurricanes on Earth, but have you ever heard of tornadoes on Mars? It may sound far-fetched, but tornadoes and hurricanes happen in many places all over the universe. [read more...]