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Cloudy with a chance of radiation: NASA studies simulated radiation

Earth observation of the space environment taken during a night pass by Dr. Kjell Lindgren of the Expedition 44 crew during Scott Kelly’s One-Year Mission aboard the International Space Station (ISS). An aurora with purple and SSRMS arm are visible. Credit: NASA Earth observation of the space environment taken during a night pass by Dr. Kjell Lindgren of the Expedition 44 crew during Scott Kelly’s One-Year Mission aboard the International Space Station (ISS). An aurora with purple and SSRMS arm are visible. Credit: NASA Close In each life a little…

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New insight into galaxy cluster's spectacular 'mini-halo'

VLA image of radio-emitting mini-halo in the Perseus Cluster of galaxies. Radio emission in red; optical in white. Credit: Gendron-Marsolais et al.; NRAO/AUI/NSF; NASA; SDSS. VLA image of radio-emitting mini-halo in the Perseus Cluster of galaxies. Radio emission in red; optical in white. Credit: Gendron-Marsolais et al.; NRAO/AUI/NSF; NASA; SDSS. Close Astronomers using the National Science Foundation’s Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) have discovered new details that are helping them decipher the mystery of how giant radio-emitting structures are formed at the center of a cluster of galaxies….

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Galaxy alignments traced back 10 billion years

MACS J0416.1-240 is a cluster of galaxies located four billion light years away. A new study based on observations with the Hubble Space Telescope has shown that the most massive galaxies in the universe, which are found in clusters like this, have been aligned with the distribution of neighboring galaxies for at least 10 billion years. Credit: ESA/Hubble, NASA, HST Frontier Fields MACS J0416.1-240 is a cluster of galaxies located four billion light years away. A new study based on observations with the Hubble Space Telescope has shown that the…

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New strategy to search for ancient black holes

Artist’s concept of a black hole accreting gas and producing a jet of high-energy particles. Credit: NASA Artist’s concept of a black hole accreting gas and producing a jet of high-energy particles. Credit: NASA Close An interdisciplinary team of physicists and astronomers at the University of Amsterdam’s GRAPPA Center of Excellence for Gravitation and Astroparticle Physics has devised a new strategy to search for ‘primordial’ black holes produced in the early universe. Such black holes are possibly responsible for the gravitational wave events observed by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory….

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VST captures Eagle Nebula and close companions

Two of the sky’s more famous residents share the stage with a lesser-known neighbour in this enormous three gigapixel image from ESO’s VLT Survey Telescope (VST). On the right lies the faint, glowing cloud of gas called Sharpless 2-54, the iconic Eagle Nebula (Messier 16) is in the centre, and the Omega Nebula (Messier 17) to the left. This cosmic trio makes up just a portion of a vast complex of gas and dust within which new stars are springing to life and illuminating their surroundings. Credit: ESO Two of…

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What are Molecules?

For millennia, scientists have pondered the mystery of life – namely, what goes into making it? According to most ancient cultures, life and all existence was made up of the basic elements of nature – i.e. Earth, Air, Wind, Water, and Fire. However, in time, many philosophers began to put forth the notion that all things were composed of tiny, indivisible things that could neither be created nor destroyed (i.e. particles). However, this was a largely philosophical notion, and it was not until the emergence of atomic theory and modern…

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First Cygnus Cargo Ship from Virginia in Two Years Docks at Space Station

Installation complete! Orbital ATK’s Cygnus cargo spacecraft was attached to the International Space_Station at 10:53 a.m. EDT on 23 Oct. 2016 after launching atop Antares rocket on 17 Oct. 2016 from NASA Wallops in Virginia. Credit: NASA After a two year gap, the first Cygnus cargo freight train from Virginia bound for the International Space Station (ISS) arrived earlier this morning – restoring this critical supply route to full operation today, Sunday, Oct. 23. The Orbital ATK Cygnus cargo spacecraft packed with over 2.5 tons of supplies was berthed to…

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What is a Magnetic Field?

Everyone knows just how fun magnets can be. As a child, who among us didn’t love to see if we could make our silverware stick together? And how about those little magnetic rocks that we could arrange to form just about any shape because they stuck together? Well, magnetism is not just an endless source of fun or good for scientific experiments; it’s also one of basic physical laws upon which the universe is based. The attraction known as magnetism occurs when a magnetic field is present, which is a…

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MIT Claims they are Programming Humanoid Robots to help Explore Mars. But we all Know It’s Cylons!

For over a decade, robots have been exploring Mars in advance of the crewed missions that are being planned for the coming decades. And when it comes time for astronauts to set foot on the Red Planet, they will be looking for robots to help them with some of the legwork. After all, exploring Mars is tough, laborious, and dangerous work, so some robotic assistance will probably be necessary. For this reason, back in November of 2015, NASA gave the Massachusetts Institute of Technology one of their R5 “Valkyrie” humanoid…

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