Elon Musk, the billionaire founder of SpaceX, said Friday the company’s huge new Starship rocket could be ready for its first orbital test launch from South Texas as soon as November, but the schedule comes with two big uncertainties that may push the launch to next year.
Blue Origin and Sierra Space announced Monday they are leading development of a commercial space complex named Orbital Reef. The companies said Orbital Reef will be operational by the time NASA and its partners retire the International Space Station.
A replacement for an aging satellite in Japan’s regional navigation network successfully launched Monday from Tanegashima Space Center aboard an H-2A rocket, heading to an orbit more than 20,000 miles above Earth.
The successful deployment of a small remote sensing satellite Wednesday 27 October 2021 set a new record for Chinese orbital launch attempts in a single year at 40 missions, surpassing a mark set in 2018 and 2020. A solid-fueled Kuaizhou 1A rocket vaulted off a launch pad Wednesday at the Jiuquan space base in the Gobi Desert of northwestern China. The smallsat launcher headed south from Jiuquan to place its payload into a polar orbit.
The sun never sets in space.
The idea of harvesting solar energy via power-beaming satellites has therefore long intrigued researchers looking for ways to feed an energy-ravenous Earth.
That reflection has fomented for decades but is now garnering new looks all over the world: Technologists in the U.S. and China, experts in Japan and researchers within the European Space Agency and the United Kingdom Space Agency are all working to make space-based solar power a reality.
Satellites will play a key role in helping the world slash emissions of the potent greenhouse gas methane in line with a global pledge introduced by the U.S. President Joe Biden and European Union leaders at the COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow this week.
It’s been a busy few days for our sun, which has produced three of the outbursts that scientists call coronal mass ejections (CMEs) since Monday (Nov. 1).
NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, offline for more than a week because of an issue with its instruments, is likely to remain out of service for another week as engineers investigate the problem.
A bus-sized asteroid made a harmless close pass by our planet on Sunday (Oct. 17). Asteroid 2021 TG14 passed by Earth at a distance of roughly 155,000 miles (250,000 km). That’s well within the orbit of our moon, which orbits at an average distance of nearly 239,000 miles (385,000 km).
Lava oozed across the moon’s surface just 2 billion years ago, bits of lunar rocks retrieved by China’s Chang’e-5 mission reveal. A chemical analysis of the volcanic rocks confirms that the moon remained volcanically active far longer that its size would suggest possible, researchers report online October 7 in Science.
The amount of sunlight that Earth reflects back into space — measured by the dim glow seen on the dark portions of a crescent moon’s face — has decreased measurably in recent years. Whether the decline in earthshine is a short-term blip or yet another ominous sign for Earth’s climate is up in the air, scientists suggest.
Recently, astronomers have been finding protoplanetary discs around certain stars. Their discovery has helped kick off a new work in planetary formation theory. But planets aren’t the objects that form from discs of material in space. Moons do too. Now, scientists led by Dr. Tomas Stolker of Leiden University and his team have delved deeper into the characteristics of a “protolunar” disc surrounding a “super Jupiter” exoplanet about 500 light-years away.
Jupiter’s atmosphere has plenty of distinct features, including lightning and the Great Red Spot. But the underlying processes that drive these features are less well understood, as the physics of the gases that make up Jupiter’s atmosphere is complicated. A team of scientists from all over the globe has found a familiar process in all the chaos, though. They think a process that happens here on Earth might be happening on a grander scale at Jupiter.
The energetic phenomena known as Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) are one of the greatest cosmic mysteries today. These mysterious flashes of light are visible in the radio wave part of the spectrum and usually last only a few milliseconds before fading away forever. Since the first FRB was observed in 2007, astronomers have looked forward to the day when instruments of sufficient sensitivity would be able to detect them regularly.