NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory News and Features 9 Aug 2017, 18:15 UTC NASA's Cassini spacecraft will enter new territory in its final mission phase, the Grand Finale, as it prepares to embark on a set of ultra-close passes through Saturn's upper atmosphere with its final five orbits around the planet.
MIT 9 Aug 2017, 17:59 UTC New evidence from ancient lunar rocks suggests that an active dynamo once churned within the molten metallic core of the moon, generating a magnetic field that lasted at least 1 billion years longer than previously thought. Dynamos are natural generators of magnetic fields around terrestrial bodies, and are powered by the churning of conducting fluids within many stars and planets. In a paper published today in Science Advances, researchers from MIT and Rutgers University report that a lunar rock collected by NASA’s Apollo 15 mission exhibits signs that it formed 1 to 2.5 billion years ago in the presence of a relatively weak magnetic field of about 5 microtesla. That’s around 10 times weaker than Earth’s current magnetic field but still 1,000 times larger than fields in interplanetary space today. Several years ago, the same researchers identified 4-billion-year-old lunar rocks that formed under a much stronger field of about 100 microtesla, and they determined that the strength of this field dropped off precipitously around 3 billion years ago. At the time, the researchers were unsure whether the moon’s dynamo — the related magnetic field — died out shortly thereafter or lingered in a weakened state before dissipating completely. The results ...
NASA's Ames Research Center News and Features 9 Aug 2017, 15:00 UTC An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth’s climate.
SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory 8 Aug 2017, 17:15 UTC
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory News and Features 7 Aug 2017, 19:08 UTC During the 20th century, the average temperature of the continental United States rose by almost 1 degree Fahrenheit (0.5 degree Celsius) -- everywhere, that is, except in the Southeast. There, until the 1980s, the temperature actually decreased slightly. Climate scientists dubbed this peculiar phenomenon the "warming hole," and it was the cause of much speculation. But beginning in the 1990s, temperatures in the Southeast began to warm again, and in the early years of the 21st century this warming has accelerated.
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center 7 Aug 2017, 19:00 UTC NASA and the Norwegian Mapping Authority are partnering to develop a state-of-the-art satellite laser ranging station 650 miles from the North Pole that will produce high-precision locations of orbiting satellites, help track changes in the ice sheets and improve the efficiency of marine transportation and agriculture.
ESA Top News 7 Aug 2017, 07:40 UTC Blink and you might have missed them. But thanks to the cadence at which Rosetta took images of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko during its most active period in August 2015, scientists watching for brief but powerful outbursts caught plenty. Thirty-four no less, in the three months centred around the comet’s closest approach to the Sun, which occurred nearly two years ago, on 13 August 2015.
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center 4 Aug 2017, 18:15 UTC The star of this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image is a galaxy known as NGC 4656, located in the constellation of Canes Venatici (The Hunting Dogs). However, it also has a somewhat more interesting and intriguing name: the Hockey Stick Galaxy! The reason for this is a little unclear from this partial view, which shows the bright central region, but the galaxy is actually shaped like an elongated, warped stick, stretching out through space until it curls around at one end to form a striking imitation of a celestial hockey stick.