NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory News and Features 22 Aug 2018, 19:08 UTC Initially scheduled for a minimum 2.5-year primary mission, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has gone far beyond its expected lifetime -- and is still going strong after 15 years. Launched into a solar orbit on Aug. 25, 2003, Spitzer was the final of NASA's four Great Observatories to reach space. The space telescope has illuminated some of the oldest galaxies in the universe, revealed a new ring around Saturn, and peered through shrouds of dust to study newborn stars and black holes.
NASA's Ames Research Center News and Features 20 Aug 2018, 19:00 UTC In the darkest and coldest parts of its polar regions, a team of scientists has directly observed definitive evidence of water ice on the Moon’s surface. These ice deposits are patchily distributed and could possibly be ancient. At the southern pole, most of the ice is concentrated at lunar craters, while the northern pole’s ice is more widely, but sparsely spread.
National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) 17 Aug 2018, 15:00 UTC The ALMA telescope in Chile has transformed how we see the universe, showing us otherwise invisible parts of the cosmos. This array of incredibly precise antennas studies a comparatively high-frequency sliver of radio light: waves that range from a few tenths of a millimeter to several millimeters in length. Recently, scientists pushed ALMA to its limits, harnessing the array’s highest-frequency (shortest wavelength) capabilities, which peer into a part of the electromagnetic spectrum that straddles the line between infrared light and radio waves.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory News and Features 16 Aug 2018, 23:08 UTC NASA's Opportunity rover has been silent since June 10, when a planet-encircling dust storm cut off solar power for the nearly-15-year-old rover. Now that scientists think the global dust storm is "decaying" -- meaning more dust is falling out of the atmosphere than is being raised back into it -- skies might soon clear enough for the solar-powered rover to recharge and attempt to "phone home."
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics 16 Aug 2018, 21:07 UTC Astronomers from Durham University and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) have found evidence that the faintest satellite galaxies orbiting our own Milky Way galaxy are among the very first galaxies that formed in our Universe.
HubbleSite NewsCenter -- Latest News Releases 16 Aug 2018, 17:00 UTC Astronomers using the ultraviolet vision of NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have captured one of the largest panoramic views of the fire and fury of star birth in the distant universe. The field features approximately 15,000 galaxies, about 12,000 of which are forming stars.
NCCR PlanetS 16 Aug 2018, 06:34 UTC Exoplanets, planets in other solar systems, can orbit very close to their host star. When, in addition to this, the host star is much hotter than our Sun, then the exoplanet becomes as hot as a star. The hottest “ultra-hot” planet was discovered last year by American astronomers. Now, an international team, led by researchers from the University of Geneva (UNIGE), who joined forces with theoreticians from the University of Bern (UNIBE), Switzerland, discovered the presence of iron and titanium vapours in the atmosphere of this planet. The detection of these heavy metals was made possible by the surface temperature of this planet, which reaches more than 4,000 degrees.