NASA News

Van Allen Probes View Supercharged Radiation Belt

August 16, 2016

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Van Allen Probes Catch Rare Glimpse of Supercharged Radiation Belt

New research details how a shockwave created by the driving force of a coronal mass ejection from the sun – struck the outermost radiation belt, triggering the greatest geomagnetic storm of the preceding decade. Our planet is nestled in the center of two immense, concentric doughnuts of powerful radiation: the Van Allen radiation belts, which […]

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Hubble Discovers Two Dwarf Galaxies Moving into the Milky Way

August 15, 2016

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Hubble Uncovers a Galaxy Pair Moving into the Milky Way

A team of astronomers has discovered two dwarf galaxies that have traveled from the remote hinterlands of space to the Milky Way. NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has uncovered two tiny dwarf galaxies that have wandered from a vast cosmic wilderness into a nearby “big city” packed with galaxies. After being quiescent for billions of years, […]

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New Research From NASA Suggests Venus May Have Been Habitable

August 11, 2016

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NASA Suggests Venus May Have Been Habitable

New research from NASA suggests that Venus may have had a shallow liquid-water ocean and habitable surface temperatures for up to 2 billion years of its early history. The findings, published this week in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, were obtained with a model similar to the type used to predict future climate change on […]

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Hubble Image of the Week – Irregular Galaxy NGC 2337

August 8, 2016

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New Hubble Image of NGC 2337

This newly released Hubble image shows galaxy NGC 2337, which is located 25 million light-years away in the constellation of Lynx. NGC 2337 is an irregular galaxy, meaning that it — along with a quarter of all galaxies in the Universe — lacks a distinct, regular appearance. The galaxy was discovered in 1877 by the […]

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Astronomers Reveal Fluctuating Atmosphere of Jupiter’s Volcanic Moon Io

August 3, 2016

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Astronomers Reveal Fluctuating Atmosphere of Jupiter’s Volcanic Moon

A newly published study from NASA reveals that Jupiter’s volcanic moon Io has a thin atmosphere that collapses in the shadow of Jupiter, condensing as ice. The study shows the freezing effects of Jupiter’s shadow during daily eclipses on the moon’s volcanic gases. “This research is the first time scientists have observed this remarkable phenomenon […]

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Astronomers Discover a Radio Pulsing White Dwarf Binary Star

August 1, 2016

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Artist Impression of the Exotic Binary Star System AR Scorpii

Using telescopes on the ground and in space, a team of astronomers has discovered a new type of exotic binary star in the system AR Scorpii. The rapidly spinning white dwarf star is powering electrons up to almost the speed of light. These high energy particles release blasts of radiation that lash the companion red […]

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Mars Orbiter Shows Gullies on Mars Not Likely Formed by Liquid Water

July 29, 2016

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New Study Shows Mars Gullies Not Formed by Liquid Water

Using data from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, astronomers show that gullies on modern Mars are likely not being formed by flowing liquid water. This new evidence will allow researchers to further narrow theories about how Martian gullies form, and reveal more details about Mars’ recent geologic processes. Scientists use the term “gully” for features on […]

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Astronomers Reveal the Rotation of the Hot Gas Around the Milky Way

July 27, 2016

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Astronomers Reveal the Dizzying Spin of the Milky Way’s Halo

A team of astronomers has discovered that the hot gas in the halo of the Milky Way galaxy is spinning in the same direction and at comparable speed as the galaxy’s disk, which contains our stars, planets, gas, and dust. This new knowledge sheds light on how individual atoms have assembled into stars, planets, and […]

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Spitzer Provides Astronomers with a New Way to See the Milky Way’s Giant Black Hole

July 26, 2016

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Astronomers See the Milky Way's Giant Black Hole with New Eyes

Astronomers are using NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope to further explore Sagittarius A*. At the center of our Milky Way galaxy lies a cosmic beast called Sagittarius A*. This supermassive black hole packs about four million sun-masses into a volume roughly the size of our solar system. Recently, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope began exploring this exotic […]

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Hubble Unveils Galaxies Near and Far

July 21, 2016

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New Hubble Image

Using gravitational lensing, the Hubble Space Telescope unveils a very cluttered-looking universe filled with galaxies near and far. Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, the TV series “Star Trek” has captured the public’s imagination with the signature phrase, “To boldly go where no one has gone before.” NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope doesn’t “boldly go” deep […]

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WISE Reveals the X-Shaped Bulge of the Milky Way

July 19, 2016

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X Shape Marks Milky Way’s Central Bulge of Stars

Using data from NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission, astronomers reveal that the Milky Way’s central bulge of stars forms an “X” shape. The unconventional collaboration started in May 2015 when Dustin Lang, an astronomer at the Dunlap Institute of the University of Toronto, posted galaxy maps to Twitter, using data from WISE’s two […]

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Hubble Reveals the Vibrant Core of Galaxy NGC 3125

July 18, 2016

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Hubble Views Galaxy NGC 3125

This newly released Hubble image reveals the vibrant core of the galaxy NGC 3125, which is located 50 million light-years away. Discovered by John Herschel in 1835, NGC 3125 is a great example of a starburst galaxy — a galaxy in which unusually high numbers of new stars are forming, springing to life within intensely […]

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NASA’s Top 10 Pluto Pics from the New Horizons Spacecraft

July 15, 2016

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Global Mosaic of Pluto in True Color

One year ago, NASA’s New Horizons mission made history by exploring Pluto and its moons – giving humankind our first real look at this fascinating world on the frontier of our solar system. Since those amazing days in July 2015 the New Horizons spacecraft has transmitted numerous images and many other kinds of data home […]

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First In-orbit View from NASA’s Juno Spacecraft

July 13, 2016

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Juno Spacecraft Sends First In-orbit Image

The first high-resolution images of Jupiter are still several weeks away, but NASA’s Juno Spacecraft did capture this new image as it entered orbit around the planet. The JunoCam camera aboard NASA’s Juno mission is operational and sending down data after the spacecraft’s July 4 arrival at Jupiter. Juno’s visible-light camera was turned on six […]

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A Peek Inside the Fuel Tank For World’s Largest Rocket

July 11, 2016

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A Peek Inside the Fuel Tank For World’s Largest Rocket

This image gives us a look up inside a nearly complete fuel tank for NASA’s powerful, new rocket—the Space Launch System – that will take humans to destinations never explored by people before. At over 300-feet tall and 5.75 million pounds at liftoff, SLS needs plenty of fuel to leave Earth. Once a final dome […]

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Astronomers Reveal the Secrets of ‘Frankenstein’ Galaxy UGC 1382

July 11, 2016

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'Frankenstein' Galaxy Surprises Scientists

Using data from NASA telescopes and other observatories, astronomers reveal the secrets of UGC 1382, revealing that the galaxy is 10 times bigger than previously thought and, unlike most galaxies, its insides are younger than its outsides, almost as if it had been built using spare parts. About 250 million light-years away, there’s a neighborhood […]

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New Study Adds Clues about Possible Water in Mars Canyons

July 8, 2016

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Mars Canyons Study Adds Clues about Possible Water

A newly published study reveals clues about possible water at seasonally dark streaks on Mars. The study investigated thousands of these warm-season features in the Valles Marineris region near Mars’ equator. Some of the sites displaying the seasonal flows are canyon ridges and isolated peaks, ground shapes that make it hard to explain the streaks […]

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NASA’s Dawn Spacecraft Maps Ceres Craters Where Ice Can Accumulate

July 8, 2016

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Dawn Maps Ceres Craters Where Ice Can Accumulate

Using data from NASA’s Dawn Mission, astronomers have identified permanently shadowed regions on the dwarf planet Ceres. These areas are likely cold enough to have trapped water ice for a billion years, suggesting that ice deposits could exist there now. “The conditions on Ceres are right for accumulating deposits of water ice,” said Norbert Schorghofer, […]

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