Space

NASA wants public to find a missing planet

NASA wants public to find a missing planet

NASA scientists believe that our solar system has nine planets, and they want member of the public to help them discover that ninth planet.

Space projects site Zooniverse has recently launched a NASA-funded venture, titled “Backyard Worlds: Planet 9,” which allows members of the public to participate in the search for the yet-to-be-discovered planet.

Project managers said anyone can participate in the search for the ninth planet, which is also called the Planet X.

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Columbia Shuttle disaster remembered on its 14th anniversary

Columbia Shuttle disaster remembered on its 14th anniversary

Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017, marked the 14th anniversary of the devastating Columbia Space Shuttle disaster that had claimed seven lives as the shuttle broke up and burnt to ashes while returning from a 16-day space mission.

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Moon swept by Venus in the night sky

Moon swept by Venus in the night sky

Just after sunset on Sunday, sky gazers were able to feat their eyes on the two brightest objects in the night sky as the Moon was swept by Venus.

The thin waxing crescent Moon, the only natural satellite of our planet, looked rather low in the sky just after the sunset and many caught it soon after before it disappeared.

As the Moon is gradually sliding away from the setting Sun, toward Venus, it will appear even closer to the planet after sunset on January 30, 2017. Eventually, the Moon will be sweeping right by Venus and then Mars to round out the month of January.

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Five teams qualified as finalists for X Prize Foundation’s Moon mission

Five teams qualified as finalists for X Prize Foundation’s Moon mission

A total of five international teams have qualified as finalists in an ambitious ongoing race to the Moon, Google-funded X Prize Foundation has announced.

The five finalists are: Moon Express of Florida, Hakuto of Japan, SpaceIL of Israel, Team Indus of India, and an international team of enthusiasts hailing from more than fifteen countries, called Synergy Moon.

Chanda Gonzales-Mowrer, senior director for X Prize Foundation, said that they were very thrilled to have five contenders, who are working from all over the globe on the mission, qualified as finalists.

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Cassini captures spectacular view of Saturn’s moon Daphnis

Cassini captures spectacular view of Saturn’s moon Daphnis

The National Aeronautics & Space Administration’s (NASA’s) Cassini spacecraft has captured stunning images of the Saturn moon Daphnis, providing the closest view of the small natural satellite obtained yet.

Cassini captured images of Daphnis while making one of its ring-grazing passes over the outer edges of gaseous planet’s rings on Jan. 16, 2017.

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Japan’s Akatsuki spacecraft captures gravity wave on Venus

Japan’s Akatsuki spacecraft captures gravity wave on Venus

Not long after entering Venus’ orbit in December 2015, Japan’s Akatsuki spacecraft has captured a really weird atmospheric phenomenon, a gravity wave, in the planet’s upper cloud layer.

Gravity waves are common phenomenon, and their effects are often seen on the clouds and oceans. These waves are caused when an atmosphere or body of water is disturbed. As gravity tries to restore equilibrium, it overshoots and causes a wave effect.

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Two astronauts carry out spacewalk to boost ISS’ power grid

Two astronauts carry out spacewalk to boost ISS’ power grid

Two astronauts carried out a trouble-free hours-long spacewalk on Friday to complete an upgrade to the International Space Station’s (ISS’) power supply.

The spacewalk was scheduled to last roughly 6.5 hours, NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough and French astronaut Thomas Pesquet of the European Space Agency (ESA) successfully complted the mission in merely 3.5 hours.

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Binary star system predicted to merge & explode in five years

Binary star system predicted to merge & explode in five years

A binary star system in the constellation Cygnus will merge and explode in five years, a team of astronomers from Calvin College, Apache Point Observatory and the University of Wyoming predicted.

Larry Molnar of Calvin College had originally predicted the potential merger and explosion of the KIC 9832227 binary star system in 2015. Now, he has confirmed that his theory will become a reality by 2022.

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Comet 45P set to appear on New Year’s Eve

Comet 45P set to appear on New Year’s Eve

A rare comet, dubbed Comet 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdusakova, is set to appear somewhere near the crescent moon on the eve of the New Year, the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory announced.

Comet 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdusakova is set to appear as people will be welcoming 2017 on Saturday, Dec. 31. However, it will not be visible to the naked eye.

Dr. David Reitzel, of Calif.-based Griffith Observatory, said the comet will be visible to users of strong binoculars or telescope. Interested people should point their instruments to the west just after sunset on Saturday to see the comet.

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Cassini spacecraft preparing for its planned death plunge into Saturn

Cassini spacecraft preparing for its planned death plunge into Saturn

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft will soon stop transmitting information back to Earth as it is preparing to embark on its final mission -- a death plunge through the gap that separates Saturn’s rings from the planet.

Launched by the American space agency in 1997, Cassini maneuvered through the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, before entering the Saturn system in 2004. It provided a lot of vital information on Titan – Saturn’s biggest moon.

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