SpaceX has completed design testing of its SuperDraco engines, which, as a key element of the Crew Dragon's launch abort system (LAS), would be responsible for carrying a crew of astronauts out of harms way in the event of a launch failure.
A new study conducted by Baylor College of Medicine in the US has provided the first evidence that medicines aren't negatively affected by spending time in space. The research looked at samples returned from the International Space Station (ISS), and represents the first step in a new avenue of study.
A team of researchers from the UK's University of Warwick has used data collected by the European Southern Observatory's (ESO) Very Large Telescope (VLT) to study a distant white dwarf. The data, which was collected over a period of 12 years, provides a rare, detailed look at the star remnant interacting with a disk of material – thought to be the remains of an asteroid. The research has the potential to answer questions about the eventual fate of our own Solar System.
Mars' moon Phobos is on a slow path to destruction, as evidenced by long, shallow grooves lining its surface, according to NASA scientists. The lines are the first stages of structural failure caused by tidal forces between the moon and its parent planet. At a distance of 3,700 miles (6,000 km), Phobos is closer to Mars than any other moon and planet in the Solar System, which is what is responsible for its looming death.
NASA has identified evidence of ice volcanoes present on the surface of the dwarf planet Pluto. The news comes as New Horizon's team discusses new scientific discoveries made by the spacecraft during its July flyby, at the 47th Annual Meeting of the Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS) of the American Astronomical Society, in Maryland.
Soshanna Cole, an assistant professor at Ithaca College, appears to have discovered evidence of acidic fog altering the surface of Mars. The discovery was made via an analysis of data collected by NASA's Spirit rover over the course of its exploration of the Red Planet.
Having failed to achieve their intended orbit following a launch in August 2014, a pair of ESA Galileo satellites are being re-tasked to test Einstein's General Theory of Relativity. More precisely, the satellites will examine the effects of gravity on the passage of time, observing the phenomenon in a detail four times greater than any previous mission.
Auroras are common spectacles in Earth's Arctic and Antarctic regions, but on Mars they're rare and not nearly as attention grabbing. Visible only in the ultraviolet, they may not be as entertaining as their earthly counterparts, but after a decade of measurements by ESA’s unmanned Mars Express orbiter, the rare Martian auroras are telling scientists a lot about the local vestigial magnetic fields of the Red Planet.
What turned Mars from the warm, wet planet that space scientists believe it was in the distant past into the cold, dessicated world of today? NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) is providing part of the answer, as it measures how fast the Martian atmosphere is being lost today. According to the space agency, the culprit is the solar winds, which are slowly stripping away the atmosphere of the Red Planet atom by atom at a rate of roughly 100 gm (3.5 oz) per second and even more during solar storms.
Images taken by the Hubble Space Telescope have been analyzed by a team of astronomers, uncovering a population of very old white dwarf stars. It's the first time the ancient stars have been observed, and their study provides clues regarding the early construction phase of our home galaxy.