11.29.2013

Some Part of Comet Ison survived!

video

Comet ISON flew through the sun's atmosphere on Nov. 28th and the encounter did not go well for the icy comet. Just before perihelion (closest approach to the sun) the comet rapidly faded and appeared to disintegrate. This prompted reports of ISON's demise. However, a fraction of the comet has survived.

Comet ISON seems to be falling apart as it approaches the sun. Indeed, researchers working with NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory said they saw nothing along the track that ISON was expected to follow through the sun's atmosphere. Nevertheless, something has emerged.

Whether this is a small scorched fragment of Comet ISON's nucleus or perhaps a "headless comet"--a stream of debris marking the remains of the comet's disintegrated core--remains to be seen. 

11.28.2013

Comet Ison did not Survive !

video

Evidence is mounting that comet ISON did not survive its brush with the sun earlier today. Nov. 28th, Thanksgiving Day in the USA, the comet was supposed to pass a little more than a million miles above the surface of the sun. As themovie from SOHO shows, the comet had already disintegrated. Click to set the scene in motion, and pay careful attention to the head of the comet.

In the movie, Comet ISON is clearly falling apart as it approaches the sun. Researchers working with the Solar Dynamics Observatory report that they are saw nothing along the track that ISON was expected to follow through the sun's atmosphere.

The movie spans a day and a half period from Nov. 27th (01:41 UT) to 28th (15:22 UT). We see that Comet ISON brightened dramatically on Nov. 27th before fading on Nov. 28th. That brightening might have been the disintegration event, in which the comet cracked open and spilled its vaporizing contents into space.




There is still a slight chance that some fraction of Comet ISON has survived.

11.23.2013

Comet ISON Still Intact


Comet ISON appeared in the higher-resolution HI-1 camera on NASA's STEREO-A spacecraft. Dark "clouds" coming from the right are more dense areas in the solar wind, causing ripples in Comet Encke's tail. Using comet tails as tracers can provide valuable data about solar wind conditions near the sun.
Image Credit: 
Karl Battams/NASA/STEREO/CIOC

Comet ISON entered the field of view of the HI-1 camera on NASA's Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory, or STEREO, on Nov. 21, 2013, and the comet shows up clearly, appearing to still be intact.

7.17.2013

Something falls from Apollo 17 LEM when leaving the moon

An interesting finding on the NASA video , showing the departure from Apollo 17 from the moon.

I cannot identify what is the piece falling on the video, i would like to have your comments

S.Sousa

7.16.2013

NASA Hubble Finds New Neptune Moon


This composite Hubble Space Telescope picture shows the location of a newly discovered moon, designated S/2004 N 1, orbiting Neptune. The black and white image was taken in 2009 with Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3 in visible light. Hubble took the color inset of Neptune on August 2009.
Image Credit: 
NASA, ESA, M. Showalter/SETI Institute


NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has discovered a new moon orbiting the distant blue-green planet Neptune, the 14th known to be circling the giant planet.
The moon, designated S/2004 N 1, is estimated to be no more than 12 miles across, making it the smallest known moon in the Neptunian system. It is so small and dim that it is roughly 100 million times fainter than the faintest star that can be seen with the naked eye.

7.04.2013

Anniversary of the Mars Pathfinder Landing

Mars Pathfinder was launched on Dec. 4, 1996 at 1:58:07 am EST on a Delta II rocket. After an uneventful journey, the spacecraft safely landed on the surface of Mars on July 4, 1997. The first set of data was received shortly after 5:00 p.m. followed by the release of images at 9:30 p.m.


The Sojourner rover, with three Lewis components, then began its Martian trek and returned images and other data over the course of three months.

6.19.2013

NASA Announces Asteroid Grand Challenge


NASA announced Tuesday a Grand Challenge focused on finding all asteroid threats to human populations and knowing what to do about them.

The challenge, which was announced at an asteroid initiative industry and partner day at NASA Headquarters in Washington, is a large-scale effort that will use multi-disciplinary collaborations and a variety of partnerships with other government agencies, international partners, industry, academia, and citizen scientists. It complements NASA's recently announced mission to redirect an asteroid and send humans to study it.

"NASA already is working to find asteroids that might be a threat to our planet, and while we have found 95 percent of the large asteroids near the Earth's orbit, we need to find all those that might be a threat to Earth," said NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver. "This Grand Challenge is focused on detecting and characterizing asteroids and learning how to deal with potential threats. We will also harness public engagement, open innovation and citizen science to help solve this global problem."

5.28.2013

X-37B Secret Mission

The U.S. Air Force's robotic X-37B space plane has quietly passed the five-month mark on its latest secret mission in Earth orbit.
 


The X-37B looks a bit like a miniature space shuttle. The vehicle is 29 feet (8.8 meters) long and 15 feet (4.5 m) wide.

Flights of the spacecraft are conducted under the auspices of the Air Force’s Rapid Capabilities Office, an organization that performs risk reduction, experimentation and concept-of-operations development for reusable space vehicle technologies.

5.14.2013

Sun increasing activity

A sunspot on the sun's eastern limb is crackling with powerful X-class solar flares.


Just-numbered AR1748 announced itself during the early hours of May 13th with an X1.7-class eruption (0217 UT), quickly followed by an X2.8-class flare (1609 UT) and an X3.2-class flare (0117 UT on May 14).

These are the strongest flares of the year so far, and they signal a significant increase in solar activity. NOAA forecasters estimate a 40% chance of more X-flares during the next 24 hours.



The explosions have also hurled coronal mass ejections (CMEs) into space. Coronagraphs onboard the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory are tracking the clouds: movie

The planet in the CME movie is Mercury. Although the CMEs appear to hit Mercury, they do not. In fact, no planets were in the line of fire. However, the CMEs appear to be on course to hit NASA's Epoxi and Spitzer spacecraft on May 15-16. 

When the action began on May 13th, the instigating sunspot (just numbered "AR1748") was hidden behind the sun's eastern limb, but now solar rotation is bringing the active region into view.

5.07.2013

Ufo almost hits plane in Glasgow



A passenger aircraft above Scotland had a narrow miss with an unidentified flying object, a report by the UK Airprox Board has revealed.

The Airbus A320 was 4,000 feet above Glasgow when the incident occurred at the beginning of December.

The report reveals that an alarmed pilot alerted traffic controllers to the presence of 'something' passing just 300-400 feet under his plane.
The pilot logged the risk of collision with the object, which did not appear on radar, as 'high'.

A report by investigators was unable to establish what the object had been
The aircraft involved was approaching Glasgow airport on 2 December 2012.

4.25.2013

The Atacama Humanoid - The Alien that its human after all...

Sirius2
Ten years after the discovery of  remains of a 15 cm  strange humanoide, it was confirmed that it is actually a human. According to the team working on the project Sirius, is the conclusion of scientists from Stanford and was presented in a new documentary.

Since the small humanoid - known as Atacama Humanoid and treated by Ata - was discovered in the Atacama Desert in Chile for 10 years, has been much speculation about its origins.

Advanced theories included that the bones were from an aborted fetus, a monkey, or, for some, even an extraterrestrial being.

In the weeks leading up to the premiere of the documentary Sirius UFO enthusiasts have increased the belief that the film could announce a breakthrough in the search for extraterrestrial life forms.



This is because the small skeleton certainly has many of the features we have come to believe to be aliens - in particular, a large head on a small body.

But the documentary reveals that a DNA sample was extracted from the bone marrow of the little being analyzed by scientists of the famous Stanford University.
The conclusion is that it is an "interesting mutation" of a human male who have survived from six to eight years after the birth.



"I can say with absolute certainty that it is not a monkey. It is human - closer to human than chimpanzees. He lived until the age between six and eight years, "said Garry Nolan, director of biology at the School of Medicine at Stanford University in California.

"The DNA tells the story and we have the computational techniques that allow us to determine, in a very short time, it is actually a human," Nolan says in the documentary. And it is, to dismay of many.

The documentary premiered in Los Angeles in the past Earth Day, April 22 - from now on will be released online and in cinemas around the world.

4.24.2013

Life Before Earth? Is life ET?


Scientists Richard Gordon and Alexei Sharov have suggested that if the rate of increase in the complexity of biological systems in the course of evolutionary history followed Moore's Law then life existed before the Earth was formed.
Moore's Law posits that the complexity of computers increases exponentially at a rate of about double the transistors per integrated circuit every two years.
Theoretical calculations based on Moore's Law yield results that coincide with the invention of the first microchips in the 1960s.
Geneticist Richard Gordon of Gulf Specimen Marine Laboratory in Florida and Alexei Sharov of the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore, basing their calculations on the premise that genetic complexity of living systems double every 376 million years, projected the origin of life back to almost 10 billion years ago. Geologists believe the age of the Earth is about 4.5 billion years. If Gordon and Sharov's projections based on Moore's law have any valid basis, it means that life is older than the Earth by 5.5 billion years.
This leads to the suggestion that life arose elsewhere in the universe and migrated to the Earth after it was formed.


Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/348515#ixzz2RQLn4TRc

NASA Invites the Public to Fly Along with Voyager

Artist's concept of Voyager and an updated gauge
The public will be able to fly along with NASA's Voyager spacecraft as the twin probes head towards interstellar space, which is the space between stars. As indicated in this artist's concept, a regularly updated gauge using data from the two spacecraft will indicate the levels of particles that originate from far outside our solar system and those that originate from inside our solar bubble. Those are two of the three signs scientists expect to see in interstellar space. The other sign is a change in the direction of the magnetic field. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech



A gauge on the Voyager home page, http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov, tracks levels of two of the three key signs scientists believe will appear when the spacecraft leave our solar neighborhood and enter interstellar space.
When the three signs are verified, scientists will know that one of the Voyagers has hurtled beyond the magnetic bubble the sun blows around itself, which is known as the heliosphere.
The gauge indicates the level of fast-moving charged particles, mainly protons, originating from far outside the heliosphere, and the level of slower-moving charged particles, also mainly protons, from inside the heliosphere. If the level of outside particles jumps dramatically and the level of inside particles drops precipitously, and these two levels hold steady, that means one of the spacecraft is closing in on the edge of interstellar space. These data are updated every six hours.

Herschel Links Water Around Jupiter to Comet Impact

This map shows the distribution of water in the stratosphere of Jupiter as measured with the Herschel space observatory
This map shows the distribution of water in the stratosphere of Jupiter as measured with the Herschel space observatory. Image credit: Water map: ESA/Herschel/T. Cavalié et al.; Jupiter image: NASA/ESA/Reta Beebe (New Mexico State University)

Astronomers have finally found direct proof that almost all water present in Jupiter's stratosphere, an intermediate atmospheric layer, was delivered by comet Shoemaker-Levy 9, which famously struck the planet in 1994.
The findings, based on new data from the Herschel space observatory, reveal more water in Jupiter's southern hemisphere, where the impacts occurred, than in the north. Herschel is a European Space Agency mission with important NASA participation.
The origin of water in the upper atmospheres of the solar system's giant planets has been debated for almost two decades. Astronomers were quite surprised at the discovery of water in the stratospheres of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, which dates to observations performed with ESA's Infrared Space Observatory in 1997.
While the source of water in the lower layers of their atmospheres can be explained as internal, the presence of this molecule in their upper atmospheric layers is puzzling due to the scarcity of oxygen there. Its supply must have an external origin. Since then, astronomers have investigated several possible candidates that may have delivered water to these planets, from icy rings and satellites to interplanetary dust particles and cometary impacts.

Comet C/2012 S1 Is On Its Way Toward the Inner Solar System




Scientists eagerly await the arrival of a recently discovered, highly active comet that will skim 730,000 miles above the Sun's surface on Nov. 28 and has the potential to be readily visible from Earth.
Comet C/2012 S1. Credit: Nasa/ESA/PSI

The comet, C/2012 S1 (ISON), is highly unusual in that it comes to the inner solar system for the first time and will skirt around the Sun within less than two solar radii from the Sun's surface on Nov. 28.
Comet C/ISON was discovered in September 2012 when it was farther away from the Sun than Jupiter, and was already active at such a great distance. This is distinct from most other sungrazers - comets that pass extremely close to the sun - that are only discovered and remain visible for several hours nearest the Sun. At such a close perihelion distance from the Sun, sungrazers are expected to be intensely heated by the Sun, and sublimate not only ice but also silicates and even metals, releasing a tremendous amount of dust. The expectation is high that Comet C/ISON will be much brighter and more spectacular than most other sungrazers when it puts on a show late this year.

Meteorite hits a home in Wolcott, nobody injured...

Officials at the Yale Peabody Museum confirmed that a meteorite struck a home in Wolcott at the end of last week.


The Wolcott Police Department said local resident Larry Beck called them before 10:30 a.m. Saturday and said a baseball-sized rock crashed through his Williams Court home the night before.
Beck said the rock caused damage to his roof, copper piping and cracked the ceiling in his kitchen before coming to a stop.
"It sounded like a gunshot but it was louder bang," Beck said. "We looked up and saw the ceiling coming down and broke away the sheet rock in the dining room."
Beck reported to police he heard the rock crash through his home Friday at 10:30 p.m., but thought that a joint or rafter had been broken.
When he checked the attic the following morning, he said he found the hole in his roof, the damage to the pipes and the rock.
He said the rock had broken in half.
"For this to crash through asphalt shingles, the roof, smash copper pipe, crack a ceiling, it was moving very quickly," said Wolcott police Chief Edward Stephens.
It was believed that the rock was possibly a broken piece of airport runway concrete that had dropped from an aircraft when the landing gear was being lowered because, Beck said, there is a lot of airport traffic over his home at all hours of the day and night.
Bradley International Airport and Oxford Airport are nearby.
But it wasn't a rock. Its not the first time see here
more here

4.15.2013

National Space Society Applauds NASA Asteroid Capture Plan

The National Space Society (NSS) applauds the new NASA budget item that would provide close to $100 million for a mission to rendezvous with a small asteroid and move it into orbit around the Moon where it could later be visited by astronauts.

"An asteroid capture mission is a tremendously important mission, and one that could not be more relevant to the challenges our civilization faces today," said Mark Hopkins, Chairman of the NSS Executive Committee. "Robotic asteroid capture is the first step to exploiting the vast material resources of the solar system for a hopeful and prosperous future for mankind."

Notes NSS Executive Vice President Paul Werbos, "Even small asteroids contain tremendous wealth-precious metals, rare strategic metals important for sustainable development, raw materials for in-space construction, and volatiles for life support and propulsion in space."

2.15.2013

Update Fall of the meteorite on the Ural Mountains

"According to preliminary assessment, it is not a space object created by technology and classified as thermogenic meteorite that flew about 30 kilometers per second at low altitude," reads a statement released today by Roscosmos.

"Similar objects accidentally enter the atmosphere and is a little predictable phenomenon," stresses the Roscosmos.

The Defense Ministry of Russia has also confirmed this information.

The populist leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky had accused the U.S. of "having experienced a new kind of weapon in the territory of Russia."

The fall of the meteorite, which broke up upon entering the atmosphere and hit six cities of the Ural Mountains, according to the latest data from the Ministry for Emergency Situations of Russia, led 474 injured, 14 of whom had to be hospitalized.

Hundreds hurt as meteorite strikes central Russia


About 400 people were injured when a meteorite shot across the sky in central Russia on Friday sending fireballs crashing to Earth, smashing windows and setting off car alarms.

Residents on their way to work in Chelyabinsk heard what sounded like an explosion, saw a bright light and then felt a shockwave.




The meteorite raced across the horizon, leaving a long white trail in its wake which could be seen as far as 200 kilometres away in Yekaterinburg. Car alarms went off, windows shattered and mobile phones worked only intermittently.
Chelyabinsk city authorities said about 400 people sought medical help, mainly for light injuries caused by flying glass.

“I was driving to work, it was quite dark, but it suddenly became as bright as if it was day,” said Viktor Prokofiev, 36, a resident of Yekaterinburg in the Urals Mountains.

“I felt like I was blinded by headlights,” he said.

No fatalities were reported but President Vladimir Putin, who was due to host Finance Ministry officials from the Group of 20 nations in Moscow, and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev were informed.

A local ministry official said the meteor shower may have been connected with an asteroid the size of an Olympic swimming pool that was due to pass Earth at a distance of 27,520 kilometres but this could not be confirmed.
Windows were shattered on Chelyabinsk’s central Lenin Street and some of the frames of shop fronts buckled.

A loud noise, resembling an explosion, rang out at around 9.20 a.m. local time. The shockwave could be felt in apartment buildings in the industrial city’s centre.

“I was standing at a bus stop, seeing off my girlfriend,” said Andrei, a local resident who did not give his second name. “Then there was a flash and I saw a trail of smoke across the sky and felt a shockwave that smashed windows.”
A wall was damaged at the Chelyabinsk Zinc Plant but there was no environmental threat, a plant spokeswoman said.

Such incidents are rare. A meteorite is thought to have devastated an area of more than 2,000 square kilometres in Siberia in 1908, smashing windows as far as 200 kilometres from the point of impact.

The Emergencies Ministry described Friday’s events as a “meteor shower in the form of fireballs” and said background radiation levels were normal. It urged residents not to panic.

Chelyabinsk city authorities urged people to stay indoors unless they needed to pick up their children from schools and kindergartens. They said a blast had been heard at an altitude of 10,000 metres, apparently signalling it occurred when the meteorite entered Earth’s atmosphere.

1.11.2013

NASA Rules Out Earth Impact in 2036 for Asteroid Apophis



NASA scientists at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., effectively have ruled out the possibility the asteroid Apophis will impact Earth during a close flyby in 2036.

The scientists used updated information obtained by NASA-supported telescopes in 2011 and 2012, as well as new data from the time leading up to Apophis' distant Earth flyby yesterday (Jan. 9). Discovered in 2004, the asteroid, which is the size of three-and-a-half football fields, gathered the immediate attention of space scientists and the media when initial calculations of its orbit indicated a 2.7 percent possibility of an Earth impact during a close flyby in 2029.

Data discovered during a search of old astronomical images provided the additional information required to rule out the 2029 impact scenario, but a remote possibility of one in 2036 remained - until yesterday.

"With the new data provided by the Magdalena Ridge [New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology] and the Pan-STARRS [Univ. of Hawaii] optical observatories, along with very recent data provided by the Goldstone Solar System Radar, we have effectively ruled out the possibility of an Earth impact by Apophis in 2036," said Don Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office at JPL.

"The impact odds as they stand now are less than one in a million, which makes us comfortable saying we can effectively rule out an Earth impact in 2036.

Our interest in asteroid Apophis will essentially be for its scientific interest for the foreseeable future." The April 13, 2029, flyby of asteroid Apophis will be one for the record books. On that date, Apophis will become the closest flyby of an asteroid of its size when it comes no closer than 19, 400 miles (31,300 kilometers) above Earth's surface.

"But much sooner, a closer approach by a lesser-known asteroid is going to occur in the middle of next month when a 40-meter-sized asteroid, 2012 DA14, flies safely past Earth's surface at about 17,200 miles," said Yeomans.

"With new telescopes coming online, the upgrade of existing telescopes and the continued refinement of our orbital determination process, there's never a dull moment working on near-Earth objects."

1.10.2013

Large asteroid belt around the star Vega

Click to enlarge


Astronomers have discovered what appears to be a large asteroid belt around the star Vega, the second brightest star in northern night skies. The scientists used data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and the European Space Agency's (ESA) Herschel Space Observatory, in which NASA plays an important role.

The discovery of an asteroid belt-like band of debris around Vega makes the star similar to another observed star called Fomalhaut. The data are consistent with both stars having inner, warm belts and outer, cool belts separated by a gap. This architecture is similar to the asteroid and Kuiper belts in our own solar system.

What is maintaining the gap between the warm and cool belts around Vega and Fomalhaut? The results strongly suggest the answer is multiple planets. Our solar system's asteroid belt, which lies between Mars and Jupiter, is maintained by the gravity of the terrestrial planets and the giant planets, and the outer Kuiper belt is sculpted by the giant planets.