March 1, 2016

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NASA to Build a Quieter Supersonic Passenger Jet

NASA Begins Work on a Quieter Supersonic Passenger Jet

NASA’s award of a contract for the preliminary design of a “low boom” flight demonstration aircraft brings the return of supersonic passenger air travel is one step closer to reality. This is the first in a series of ‘X-planes’ in NASA’s New Aviation Horizons initiative, introduced in the agency’s Fiscal Year 2017 budget. NASA Administrator […]

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February 29, 2016

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Yale Researchers Identify Gene That Regulates the Growth of Melanoma

Yale Identifies Gene That Regulates the Growth of Melanoma

New research from Yale University identifies a gene in melanoma that can dramatically affect the growth of the disease. The findings, published in the journal Cell Reports, provide new insight into how melanoma grows and identifies a new target for treatment of melanoma and other cancers. Enzymes that chemically modify DNA, known as DNA methyltranferases, […]

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February 29, 2016

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Astronomers Take A Closer Look at the Milky Way’s Central Molecular Zone

Molecular Gas Kinematics Within the Central 250 pc of the Milky Way

New research confirms that the Milky Way’s Central Molecular Zone is not centered on the black hole, but is offset; they also confirm that the gas motions throughout are supersonic. The center of our Milky Way galaxy lies about 27,000 light-years away in the direction of the constellation of Sagittarius. At its core is a […]

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February 29, 2016

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NASA’s MAVEN Spacecraft Observes Mars Moon Phobos

Phobos as Observed by MAVEN's Imaging Ultraviolet Spectrograph

New observations from NASA’s MAVEN Mission has scientists closer to solving the mystery of how Mars’ moon Phobos formed. In late November and early December 2015, NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission made a series of close approaches to the Martian moon Phobos, collecting data from within 300 miles (500 kilometers) of the […]

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February 29, 2016

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Hubble Image of the Week – A Stellar Fingerprint

Hubble Views Emission-Line Star IRAS 12196-6300

Showcased at the center of this newly released NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image is an emission-line star known as IRAS 12196-6300. Located just under 2300 light-years from Earth, this star displays prominent emission lines, meaning that the star’s light, dispersed into a spectrum, shows up as a rainbow of colors marked with a characteristic pattern […]

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February 26, 2016

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New IBEX Observations Determine the Strength of the Magnetic Field Outside the Heliosphere

IBEX Observations Pin Down Interstellar Magnetic Field

A newly published study uses IBEX data and simulations of the interstellar boundary to better describe space in our galactic neighborhood. Immediately after its 2008 launch, NASA’s Interstellar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, spotted a curiosity in a thin slice of space: More particles streamed in through a long, skinny swath in the sky than anywhere […]

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February 25, 2016

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Astronomers Identify the Precise Location of a Fast Radio Burst in a Distant Galaxy

Radio Burst Reveals 'Missing Matter' in the Universe

An international team of astronomers used a combination of radio and optical telescopes to identify the precise location of a fast radio burst (FRB) in a distant galaxy, allowing them to conduct a unique census of the Universe’s matter content. Their result, published in today’s edition of Nature, confirms current cosmological models of the distribution […]

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February 25, 2016

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Gravitational Waves Could Soon be Detectable by Existing Radio Telescopes

Low-Frequency Gravitational Waves Could Soon be Detectable by Existing Radio Telescopes

A newly published study from the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves reveals that low-frequency gravitational waves could soon be detectable by existing radio telescopes. The recent detection of gravitational waves by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) came from two black holes, each about 30 times the mass of our sun, merging into […]

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February 24, 2016

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New Research Shows LIGO’s Twin Black Holes Might Have Been Born Inside a Single Star

Twin Black Holes Born Inside a Single Star

Newly published research from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics suggests that the burst detected by LIGO occurred because the two black holes lived and died inside a single, massive star. On September 14, 2015, the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) detected gravitational waves from the merger of two black holes 29 and 36 times the […]

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February 24, 2016

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Scientists Develop a Light-Driven Three-Dimensional Plasmonic Nanosystem

Researchers Develop Nanoplasmonic System in the Form of a Pair of Scissors That They Can Open Using UV light

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems have developed a nanoplasmonic system in the form of a pair of scissors that they can open using UV light. Nanomachines could take over a variety of tasks in future. Some day they may be able to perform medical precision work in the human body or […]

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February 24, 2016

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Astronomers Complete the ATLASGAL Survey of Milky Way

The Southern Plane of the Milky Way

Astronomers have completed the APEX Telescope Large Area Survey of the Galaxy (ATLASGAL). A spectacular new image of the Milky Way has been released to mark the completion of the APEX Telescope Large Area Survey of the Galaxy (ATLASGAL). The APEX telescope in Chile has mapped the full area of the Galactic Plane visible from […]

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February 23, 2016

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Astronomers Discover Distant Radio Galaxies via Gravitational Lensing

Radio Galaxies Being Gravitationally Lensed

A new study details how a team of X-ray astronomers used lensed radio galaxies to identify and study distant galaxies with active supermassive black hole nuclei. A lensing cluster is a gravitationally bound collection of galaxies, hundreds or even thousands, whose mass acts as a gravitational lens to collect and reimage the light of more […]

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February 23, 2016

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Cassini Measures Titan Surface Temperatures During Northern Winter and Spring

New Titan Temperature Lag Maps & Animation

Newly published research details the varying surface temperatures on Saturn’s moon Titan at two-year intervals, from 2004 to 2016. The measurements were made by the Composite Infrared Spectrometer (CIRS) instrument on NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. The maps show thermal infrared radiation (heat) coming from Titan’s surface at a wavelength of 19 microns, a spectral window at […]

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February 22, 2016

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Climate Change Threatens Boreal Coniferous Forests

Climate Change Threatens Dark Taiga

New research from the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry reveals that Boreal coniferous forests could see increased occurrences of fire as a result of global warming, with deciduous trees becoming more dominant in the future. Climate change is transforming the Earth, particularly in high-latitude regions. The boreal coniferous forests of the northern hemisphere will witness […]

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February 22, 2016

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New Microfluidic Screening Device May Speed Up DNA Insertion in Bacteria

New Microfluidic Device May Speed Up DNA Insertion in Bacteria

In search of the ideal bacteria for use in a microbial fuel cell, researchers from MIT have developed a new microfluid device to quickly sort and identify the various strains. This technology, which could lead to a carbon-neutral method of harvesting energy for the grid from wastewater, may also be useful to doctors in identifying […]

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February 22, 2016

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Three Times the Fun: New Cassini Image of Tethys, Enceladus and Mimas

New Cassini Image of Tethys, Enceladus and Mimas

This newly released Cassini image shows Saturn’s moons Tethys, Enceladus and Mimas. Three of Saturn’s moons — Tethys, Enceladus and Mimas — are captured in this group photo from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. Tethys (660 miles or 1,062 kilometers across) appears above the rings, while Enceladus (313 miles or 504 kilometers across) sits just below center. […]

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February 22, 2016

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Hubble Image of the Week – Blue Bubble in Carina

Hubble Views Wolf–Rayet Star WR 31a

This newly released Hubble image shows Wolf–Rayet star WR 31a. Sparkling at the center of this beautiful NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image is a Wolf–Rayet star known as WR 31a, located about 30,000 light-years away in the constellation of Carina (The Keel). The distinctive blue bubble appearing to encircle WR 31a, and its uncatalogued stellar […]

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February 19, 2016

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Hubble Measures Rotation of ‘Super-Jupiter’ Exoplanet 2M1207b

Discovery of Rotational Modulations in the Planetary-Mass Companion 2M1207b

Using the Hubble Space Telescope, a team of astronomers has measured the rotation rate of an extreme exoplanet by observing the varied brightness in its atmosphere. This is the first measurement of the rotation of a massive exoplanet using direct imaging. “The result is very exciting,” said Daniel Apai of the University of Arizona in […]

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