Observations carried out by NASA's Swift and Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) space telescopes may have located the source of intense X-ray bursts emitted by supermassive black holes. According to NASA, the phenomenon can be attributed to a component of a black hole known as a corona.
A new NASA study has suggested that gigantic spiral patterns seen around very young stars may be a telltale sign of gigantic, unseen planets in their orbit. If proved accurate, the theory would allow for a new method of planet detection, while providing an invaluable look at planet birth.
It's been a busy year for Cassini, making observations of Hyperion and Dione, before discovering evidence of a global ocean beneath the moon Enceladus' icy surface. Now the probe is back at Enceladus for another flyby, completing its deepest-ever dive through the body's icy plume.
A NASA-funded research team has confirmed the origin of organic matter found in lunar samples collected during the Apollo missions. It has long been known that the soil samples collected in the late 60s and early 70s contained amino acids, but the technology to determine where they came from has not been available until now.
NASA has analyzed 14 years worth of data collected by its Thermosphere, Inonosphere, Mesosphere Energetics and Dynamics (TIMED) satellite, revealing a surprisingly fast increase in carbon dioxide levels in the upper atmosphere. The stats also reveal that the gas is more localized to the Northern Hemisphere than predicted by climate models.
NASA's Dawn spacecraft has begun the process of transferring to its fourth and final mapping orbit, as it continues its mission around the dwarf planet Ceres. Dawn initially made orbit around Ceres on Mar. 6, and since then has provided us with increasingly detailed images and data, unlocking many of the mysteries harbored by the enigmatic celestial body.
A Space Age collectible that not only represents a first in space, but also a first in computer history is on the auction block in Dallas, Texas. As part of its Space Exploration Signature Auction, Heritage Auctions is taking bids for a vintage random access, non-destructive readout 4,096 bit memory plane that flew on Gemini 3. This ferric memory unit was an integral part of the Gemini Spacecraft Computer, which was the first computer installed in a manned space capsule.
A new NASA study has looked at the bacteria present on the International Space Station (ISS), assessing the species that could potentially be harmful to both astronauts and equipment. The research provides useful insights that are important for long-term space flights, such as the agency's planned mission to Mars.
Astronomers have discovered large quantities of alcohol and sugar, as well as the presence of complex organic molocules, on the comet Lovejoy. The observations, made by the 30 meter (98 ft) radio telescope at Pico Veleta, Spain, support the theory that comets may have played an important role in the formation of life on Earth.
The first of three planned configurations of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS), known as Block 1, has completed and passed the final Critical Design Review (CDR). This is the fourth and final review focusing on the concept and design of NASA's first man-rated launcher since the Space Shuttle and paves the way for full-scale fabrication of the first exploration-class rocket since the Saturn V and the most powerful rocket ever built.