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NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center 21 Jul 2017, 14:52 UTC Tucked away in the small northern constellation of Canes Venatici (The Hunting Dogs) is the galaxy NGC 4242, shown here as seen by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. The galaxy lies some 30 million light-years from us. At this distance from Earth, actually not all that far on a cosmic scale, NGC 4242 is visible to anyone armed with even a basic telescope, as British astronomer William Herschel found when he discovered the galaxy in 1788.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory News and Features 20 Jul 2017, 19:07 UTC
HubbleSite NewsCenter -- Latest News Releases 20 Jul 2017, 17:00 UTC While photographing Mars, NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope captured a cameo appearance of the tiny moon Phobos on its trek around the Red Planet. Discovered in 1877, the diminutive, potato-shaped moon is so small that it appears star-like in the Hubble pictures. Phobos orbits Mars in just 7 hours and 39 minutes, which is faster than Mars rotates. The moon’s orbit is very slowly shrinking, meaning it will eventually shatter under Mars’ gravitational pull, or crash into the planet. Hubble took 13 separate exposures over 22 minutes to create a time-lapse video showing the moon’s orbital path.
Europlanet Research Infrastructure 20 Jul 2017, 09:57 UTC The first observing run of a collaboration between amateur and professional astronomers to monitor our planetary neighbours has resulted in some of the best planetary images ever taken from the ground.
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics 19 Jul 2017, 18:10 UTC Physicists are capitalizing on a direct connection between the largest cosmic structures and the smallest known objects to use the universe as a "cosmological collider" and investigate new physics.
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Many Worlds 21 Jul 2017, 14:52 UTC I’m taking a little break alongside the Atlantic but can’t leave exoplanets et al behind. Water worlds are inferred, or known, to be present and perhaps not uncommon in the galaxy. And there is reason to conclude that they may have much more water than Earth. Although 70.8% of all Earth’s surface is covered in water, H2O accounts for just some 0.05% of Earth’s mass.
The Planetary Society Blog 21 Jul 2017, 11:00 UTC As Earth's northern hemisphere passes through summer solstice, the news cycle tends to slow down. Schools close, people go on vacation, and things usually get a little quieter. LightSail 2 spent most of its summer in storage, at both Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and Ecliptic Enterprises Corporation in Pasadena. Following a pre-ship review in March, The Planetary Society's solar sailing CubeSat has been waiting for its shipping schedule to firm up.
Planetaria 21 Jul 2017, 00:44 UTC Jupiter has been in the news a lot lately, with the Juno spacecraft continuing to send back stunning new images of the largest planet in the Solar System, including close-ups of the Great Red Spot. But something else happened at this time 23 years ago which captured astronomers’ and the public’s attention – a huge explosion in Jupiter’s atmosphere as a comet broke apart and the fragments collided with the planet, plummeting into the deep, thick atmosphere. The impacts and resulting “scars” were observed by telescopes around the world.
AmericaSpace 20 Jul 2017, 21:05 UTC Last summer, NASA selected six companies to develop prototypes and concepts for deep space habitats for future crews flying missions on Orion. Lockheed Martin was one of them, and this week the company released some details on plans for their full-scale prototype, which they hope to complete over the next 18 months.
Centauri Dreams 20 Jul 2017, 16:52 UTC If we were to send a message to an extraterrestrial civilization and make contact, should we assume it would be significantly more advanced than us? The odds say yes, and the thinking goes like this: We are young enough that we have only been using radio for a century or so. How likely is it that we would reach a civilization that has been using such technologies for an even shorter period of time? As assumptions go, this one seems sensible enough.