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Space

2,325 and counting: Kepler doubles its haul in largest exoplanet discovery ever

Since it launched six years years ago, NASA's Kepler space telescope has provided a guiding light in our search for extraterrestrial life, scanning the sky for potentially habitable Earth-size planets. Today the agency has announced the discovery of almost 1,300 new exoplanets, doubling the craft's previous tally and giving the chances of finding another world just like ours a healthy little boost.Read More

How Earth's magnetic field is changing

The European Space Agency (ESA) launched its trio of Earth-facing satellites – the Swarm satellites – more than two years ago. Since then, the three probes have been tirelessly making measurements of the Earth's magnetic field, mapping it out in detail. Now, that data has been used in a new study of how the magnetic field has changed over recent years, with the results echoing what's happening at the planet's core. Read More

Starlight observation of Enceladus' plumes uncovers fresh mystery

NASA's Cassini spacecraft has used the light of a faraway star to observe the vast cryovolcanic eruption taking place on Saturn's moon Enceladus. Captured at a distant point in its orbit relative to the gas giant, Enceladus' tiger stripe vents behaved in a way that will force astronomers to rethink their current models regarding the enigmatic moon's internal plumbing.Read More

MESSENGER spacecraft provides first global topographical model of Mercury

Using data captured by NASA's MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft, a team of scientists has constructed the first complete digital elevation model (DEM) of the planet Mercury. The newly-released map reveals the geographical highs and lows of the innermost planet in our solar system, as well as highlighting a number of fascinating surface characteristics.Read More

Luxembourg joins asteroid mining space race

With a population of under 600,000, it's not surprising Luxembourg isn't currently on the list of spacefaring nations. But that hasn't stopped its government, along with the Luxembourg Société Nationale de Crédit et d'Investissement (SNCI), entering into a partnership with the US asteroid mining company Deep Space Industries (DSI) as part of the country's spaceresources.lu initiative to develop new commercial space technologies with an emphasis on asteroid mining.Read More

How to view the upcoming Mercury transit

On Monday the 9th of May, the planet Mercury will make a rare transit of our Sun. The event is a precious opportunity to observe firsthand the ordinarily hidden celestial mechanics that govern our solar system. A tortured ball of rock less than half the size of Earth, Mercury represents the innermost planet in our Solar System, orbiting a mere 36 million miles from our Sun.Read More

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