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Preview: EurekAlert! - Space and Planetary Science

EurekAlert! - Space and Planetary Science



The premier online source for science news since 1996. A service of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.



Last Build Date: Fri, 15 Dec 2017 15:45:02 EST

Copyright: Copyright 2017 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS); All rights reserved.
 



W. M. Keck Observatory awarded NSF grant to boost performance of adaptive optics system

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(W. M. Keck Observatory) The National Science Foundation has awarded funding to the W. M. Keck Observatory on Maunakea, Hawaii, for a significant enhancement of the performance of the Adaptive Optics system on the Keck II telescope.



New report: NASA should develop US strategy for international space station beyond 2024

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine) Although NASA has made progress toward the overall space exploration science priorities recommended in a 2011 decadal survey by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the space agency should raise the priority of scientific research that addresses the risks and unknowns of human space exploration.



Space station research explorer on NASA.gov launches phase one

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Johnson Space Center) Researchers, prospective partners, media professionals, students, and space enthusiasts now have more space station science at their fingertips with Space Station Research Explorer on NASA.gov (SSRE on NASA.gov). The new information exploration tool enables researchers, practiced and amateur alike, to stay up-to-date with the science being conducted aboard the International Space Station.



Graphene in zero G promises success in space

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Graphene Flagship) In a successful collaboration between the Graphene Flagship and the European Space Agency, experiments testing graphene for two different space-related applications have shown extremely promising results. Based on these results, the Flagship are continuing to develop graphene devices for use in space.



NASA sees Tropical Storm Kai-Tak moving over the Philippines

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) NASA's Aqua satellite provided infrared imagery of Tropical Storm Kai-Tak that revealed the western side of storm had moved into the southern and central Philippines. Infrared data revealed very cold cloud top temperatures with the potential for heavy rainfall.



Scientific achievements during the operation of Lomonosov satellite

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Lomonosov Moscow State University) The Lomonosov Project is a large-scale scientific and educational space project of Lomonosov Moscow State University aimed at studying space phenomena. In the course of operation of Lomonosov satellite on the orbit the team of Skobeltsyn Scientific and Research Institute of Nuclear Physics, MSU received new data on many understudied physical phenomena both in the Universe and in the atmosphere of the Earth.



A model of Mars-like protoplanets shed light on early solar activity

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Siberian Federal University) A scientist from Siberian Federal University (SFU) and his colleagues from Austria and Germany constructed a physical and mathematical model of Mars- and Venus-sized planet formation. The team concluded that Mars had no chances to develop a thick atmosphere and biosphere. In the case of Venus it depended on solar activity: according to the scientists, it managed to keep its atmosphere due to the fact that young Sun was not very active. The study was published in Icarus.



A better way to weigh millions of solitary stars

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Vanderbilt University) Astronomers have come up with a new and improved method for measuring the masses of millions of solitary stars, especially those with planetary systems.



GAMBIT narrows the hiding places for 'new physics'

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(The Henryk Niewodniczanski Institute of Nuclear Physics Polish Academy of Sciences) The elementary particles of 'new physics' must be so massive that their detection in the LHC, the largest modern accelerator, will not be possible. This none- too-optimistic conclusion comes from the most comprehensive review of observational data from many scientific experiments and their confrontation with several popular varieties of supersymmetry theory. The complicated, extremely computationally demanding analysis was carried out by the team of the international GAMBIT Collaboration -- and leaves a shadow of hope.



NASA looks at rainfall in developing Tropical Storm Kai-tak

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) Tropical Storm Kai-tak developed near the east central Philippines as the Global Precipitation Measurement mission or GPM core satellite passed overhead and analyzed its rainfall.



NRL updates tropical cyclone weather predicting model

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(Naval Research Laboratory) NRL COAMPS®-TC improves forecasts and evacuation correctness in both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans and enhances the safety of US Navy ships, aircraft, and the civilian population.



Dawn of a galactic collision

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(ESA/Hubble Information Centre) A riot of color and light dances through this peculiarly shaped galaxy, NGC 5256. Its smoke-like plumes are flung out in all directions and the bright core illuminates the chaotic regions of gas and dust swirling through the galaxy's center. Its odd structure is due to the fact that this is not one galaxy, but two -- in the process of a galactic collision.



Doing without dark energy

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of California - Davis) Three mathematicians have a different explanation for the accelerating expansion of the universe that does without theories of 'dark energy.' Einstein's original equations for General Relativity actually predict cosmic acceleration due to an 'instability,' they argue in paper published recently in Proceedings of the Royal Society A.



NASA sees developing system 96W affecting central Philippines

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) A developing area of tropical low pressure designated System 96W was affecting the central Philippines when NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite passed overhead.



Mars mission sheds light on habitability of distant planets

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) Insights from NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, or MAVEN, mission about the loss of the Red Planet's atmosphere can help scientists understand the habitability of rocky planets orbiting other stars.



Spanning disciplines in the search for life beyond Earth

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) Following a gold rush of exoplanet discovery, the next step in the search for life is determining which of the known exoplanets are proper candidates for life -- and for this, a cross-disciplinary approach is essential.



Giant storms cause palpitations in Saturn's atmospheric heartbeat

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of Leicester) A University of Leicester scientist leads a Cassini mission study into immense northern storms on Saturn.



Does eclipse equal night in plant life?

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(American Society of Agronomy) As the Aug. 21 eclipse approached, researchers prepared to understand plants' response to light and temperature. The varied results have left the researchers with interesting questions.



Major space mystery solved using data from student satellite

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of Colorado at Boulder) A 60-year-old mystery regarding the source of some energetic and potentially damaging particles in Earth's radiation belts is now solved using data from a shoebox-sized satellite built and operated by University of Colorado Boulder students.



Stellar nursery blooms into view

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(ESO) The OmegaCAM camera on ESO's VLT Survey Telescope has captured this glittering view of the stellar nursery called Sharpless 29. Many astronomical phenomena can be seen in this giant image, including cosmic dust and gas clouds that reflect, absorb, and re-emit the light of hot young stars within the nebula.



USC Viterbi faculty design thermal 'skin' to maintain temperature of satellites

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of Southern California) If a satellite's temperature is not maintained within its optimal range, its performance can suffer which could mean it could be harder to track wildfires or other natural disasters, your Google maps might not work and your Netflix binge might be interrupted. This might be prevented with a new material recently developed by USC Viterbi School of Engineering engineers.



Hubble's celestial snow globe

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) It's beginning to look a lot like the holiday season in this NASA Hubble Space Telescope image of a blizzard of stars, which resembles a swirling snowstorm in a snow globe.



NASA analyzes short-lived Bay of Bengal cyclone

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) NASA analyzed the rainfall generated by short-lived Tropical Cyclone 04B that formed and faded over a day in the Bay of Bengal.



Stewart Prager honored with FPA Distinguished Career Award

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(DOE/Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory) Stewart Prager, physicist and long-time fusion energy scientist who was director of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) from 2009 to 2016, has been honored with a 2017 Distinguished Career Award from Fusion Power Associates (FPA). Prager, a leading contributor to the advancement of plasma physics and fusion science, received the award at the 38th annual meeting of FPA held Dec. 6-7 in Washington, D.C. The association provides students, media and the public with information about the status of fusion development and other applications of plasma science.



National Academy of Inventors, USF announce 2017 NAI Fellows

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:00:00 EST

(University of South Florida (USF Innovation)) The National Academy of Inventors on Tuesday named as 2017 Fellows University of South Florida Physics Professor Emeritus Dennis K. Killinger, a pioneer in the use of lasers and optical remote sense as scientific tools, and USF Institute for Advanced Discovery & Innovation Professor Donald Keck, whose work in developing fiber optics laid the groundwork for the internet.