February 23, 2015
New evidence points to the evolution of the ability for bacteria to grab nitrogen from the atmosphere some 3.2 billion years ago, about 1.2 billion years earlier than thought—with implications for finding extraterrestrial life. Lee Billings reports
February 17, 2015
A dwarf galaxy near the Milky Way may consist of more dark matter than regular matter.* Clara Moskowitz reports
February 10, 2015
NASA has to deal with the unexpected financial consequences of robotic missions that just keep going. Lee Billings reports
February 2, 2015
The oldest group of terrestrial worlds now known formed some 11.2 billion years ago, more than six billion years before our sun and planets. Clara Moskowitz reports
January 26, 2015
New images from a NASA orbiter reveal Beagle 2’s final resting place. Lee Billings reports
January 16, 2015
Australian amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy’s latest comet find is naked-eye visible in the southeast sky until January 24. Clara Moskowitz reports      
December 31, 2014
The company hopes to send up a Falcon 9 rocket and then safely land the discarded first stage for reuse. Lee Billings reports
December 10, 2014
John Grunsfeld, the former astronaut who now heads NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, thinks that traveling light could get people to Mars by the 2040s
December 1, 2014
Jupiter's Great Red Spot is its particular crimson shade because of the interaction of ultraviolet light and specific chemical compounds in the gas giant's atmosphere. Lee Billings reports      
November 21, 2014
Over the summer researchers identified seven specks of dust returned to Earth by the Stardust spacecraft. But determining their true origin has been difficult. Clara Moskowitz reports
November 4, 2014
The Rosetta spacecraft has unexpectedly detected hydrogen sulphide and ammonia coming from Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Lee Billings reports     
October 17, 2014
Take part in a citizen-science project by helping researchers track high-energy cosmic rays via a network of smartphone users. Clara Moskowitz reports      
October 9, 2014
Astronomers have discovered one of the largest and most complex organic molecules yet in a gaseous star-forming region of interstellar space. Clara Moskowitz reports
September 24, 2014
Data from the International Space Station-based Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer experiment supports the idea that dark matter consists of the invisible particles called weakly interacting massive particles, or WIMPs. Clara Moskowitz reports
September 11, 2014
Texas State University astronomer Donald Olson combined solar, tidal and weather data to identify the likely moment of the image in the Monet work Impression, Sunrise      
September 4, 2014
Astronomers have identified the Milky Way’s cosmic address—inside the supercluster Laniakea, which means “immense heaven” in Hawaiian. Clara Moskowitz reports
August 24, 2014
On August 24th, 1989, the Voyager 2 spacecraft rendezvoused with Neptune, making it the farthest planet to pose for a close-up, a record it still holds today.      
August 13, 2014
If intelligent aliens are dumb enough to pollute their atmosphere, NASA’s upcoming James Webb Space Telescope is powerful enough to spot some of the signs on some exoplanets. Clara Moskowitz reports     
July 25, 2014
Within a Mars-like laboratory environment, perchlorate salts known to exist on Mars were able to lower the freezing point enough to get ice to turn to liquid water. Clara Moskowitz reports     
July 9, 2014
The Cassini probe readies for its final act with new flight patterns that will get unprecedented views of Saturn and culminate in a final dive into the planet's atmosphere. Clara Moskowitz reports     
July 2, 2014
A galaxy four billion light-years from us was has three supermassive black holes at its center, with two in a tight formation. Clara Moskowitz reports
June 23, 2014
The European Southern Observatory broke ground June 19th to build the world's largest telescope atop the Cerro Armazones mountain in Chile. Clara Moskowitz reports     
June 16, 2014
The current solar maximum appears to be weak. But the few previously measured maxes could have been unusually strong. Clara Moskowitz reports     
June 2, 2014
A failed dwarf galaxy called the Smith Cloud apparently survived an ancient collision with the Milky Way because of a protective dark matter cloak. Clara Moskowitz reports     
May 28, 2014
Pluto has at least five moons and an atmosphere—and now a new analysis places its diameter as bigger than its outer solar system rival, Eris    
May 22, 2014
Jupiter's Great Red Spot, once estimated to be 41,000 kilometers across, is just 16,500 kilometers wide in the latest Hubble Space Telescope observations, and the shrinkage seems to be accelerating. Clara Moskowitz reports
May 15, 2014
When a white dwarf passes in front of its binary star system companion every 88 days, it acts like a lens to make the larger star appear brighter to us.
May 8, 2014
The star cluster HVGC-1 had been part of the M87 galaxy, but now it's fleeing that galaxy at more than two million miles per hour. Clara Moskowitz reports
April 30, 2014
A brown dwarf only about three to 10 times Jupiter's mass couldn't get fusion going and now sits freezing in space, in the nearby galactic neighborhood. Clara Moskowitz reports
April 22, 2014
Citizen scientists have helped professional astronomers locate more than 500 million lunar craters by using an app called MoonMappers. Karen Hopkin reports  
April 14, 2014
More than 100 tiny satellites are set to launch into space on April 14th, in a demonstration of a possible future inexpensive technology that could pave the way for the $1,000 satellite. Clara Moskowitz reports  
April 8, 2014
After prolonged periods in microgravity, astronauts' hearts became more spherical, according to scans done on the International Space Station. Sophie Bushwick reports  
March 27, 2014
The asteroidlike object Chariklo orbits between Saturn and Uranus and has been found to have its own set of rings. Clara Moskowitz reports  
March 11, 2014
An exhaustive search by NASA's Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer has found no hints of a theorized planet or dwarf star in our neck of the cosmic woods. Clara Moskowitz reports  
March 5, 2014
The half-the-speed-of-light spin of a giant black hole suggests it grew by digesting another black hole in a galaxy merger. Clara Moskowitz reports
February 25, 2014
Spanish astronomers spotted a meteoroid impact at 61,000 kilometers per hour using a telescope network that automatically scans the moon. Clara Moskowitz reports
February 20, 2014
The Hubble Telescope's new set of Frontier Fields images includes a galaxy some 13-billion light-years away, which makes it a candidate for the most distant object ever seen. Clara Moskowitz reports
February 14, 2014
Galileo—who, among many accomplishments, was first to use a telescope to discover moons around Jupiter—was born 450 years ago this week. Clara Moskowitz reports  
February 6, 2014
Exoplanet Kepler 413 b's tilt can vary by as much as 30 degrees over 11 years, leading to extremely erratic seasons. Clara Moskowitz reports  
January 31, 2014
Astronomers have come up with a shopping list of what a planet needs to support life, perhaps even better than our Earth does, making them "superhabitable." Michael Moyer reports  
January 24, 2014
On January 20th the European Space Agency woke its Rosetta probe after two-and-a-half years in hibernation, in preparation for its final approach to a comet
January 15, 2014
More than 3,000 astronomers assembled last week for the 223rd meeting of the American Astronomical Society. Clara Moskowitz reports
December 31, 2013
Two recently found supernovae are much farther away and brighter than almost any star explosion ever seen, perhaps because they wound up as rapidly spinning magnetars. Clara Moskowitz reports
December 23, 2013
The Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer satellite that went into hibernation in 2011 has been brought to life as an asteroid lookout. Clara Moskowitz reports
December 18, 2013
Ten-year-old Nathan Gray of Nova Scotia officially becomes the youngest person ever to identify a new supernova. Clara Moskowitz reports
November 25, 2013
Don't miss viewing Comet ISON, visible in the east before dawn, with a tail now as long as the bowl of the Big Dipper. Clara Moskowitz reports
November 18, 2013
India aims to become the fourth entity to send a mission to Mars with its launch of the Mars Orbiter Mission, aka Mangalyaan. Clara Moskowitz reports.
November 4, 2013
At a symposium on the danger of asteroid impacts, Apollo astronaut Rusty Schweickart said it's time for the planet to develop a strategy should a big rock come our way. Clara Moskowitz reports.
October 22, 2013
Two of the three known planets around the star Kepler 56 orbit their host out of line with the star's equator. Clara Moskowitz reports.
September 16, 2013
Voyager 1's own record of the plasma vibrations in its vicinity conclusively show that it has reached the space between the stars. John Matson reports
September 4, 2013
The distributed computing project Einstein@Home uses home computers to search through years of telescope data to find pulsars. John Matson reports.
August 26, 2013
NASA's WISE satellite surveyed the universe before being mothballed in 2011. Now it's being resurrected as a near-Earth asteroid scanner.
August 22, 2013
Although the Kepler space telescope's stabilization system is beyond repair, it has produced reams of data that have yet to be fully searched for exoplanets. John Matson reports.
August 15, 2013
The only issue related to the flip of the sun's magnetic field is that it corresponds with the peak of the sunspot cycle, when the sun is prone to launch flares and bursts of plasma into space that can effect satellites and power grids. John Matson reports.
August 7, 2013
Since it landed on Mars on August 6, 2012, the Curiosity rover has done photography, geology and roamed a good kilometer. John Matson reports
July 29, 2013
A huge cloud of plasma south of our galactic black hole could be evidence of a past feeding frenzy. John Matson reports
July 23, 2013
Theory said that muon neutrinos could transform into electron neutrinos. A neutrino detector confirms this by catching many more electron neutrinos than it should have otherwise. John Matson reports
July 15, 2013
The black hole in galaxy NGC 1277 is way more massive than usual. Astronomers hypothesize it was ejected from another galaxy before settling in its new home. John Matson reports
July 8, 2013
The star WX UMa went from 5,000 degrees Fahrenheit to 30,000 degrees F in less than three minutes. Chris Crockett reports
July 1, 2013
A reaction between two common molecules occurs much faster at frosty interstellar temperatures than on our toasty Earth due to a cold-stabilized transition and quantum tunneling. John Matson reports
June 26, 2013
Three teenage Texas model rocketeers beat out teams from France and the U.K. to claim top honors at this year's International Rocketry Competition. John Matson reports
June 21, 2013
Looking at the Himiko Galaxy as it was just 800 million years after the big bang offers a glimpse at how the most massive galaxies took shape. John Matson reports
June 13, 2013
Segue 2, one of dozens of "companion" galaxies that orbit the Milky Way, is now the smallest galaxy known. Michael Moyer reports
May 31, 2013
A side benefit of NASA's Curiosity rover mission is that we now know about how much radiation an interplanetary traveler would face. John Matson reports
May 29, 2013
Isotopic analysis of water trapped in volcanic glass in lunar samples show that the moon has more water than thought, and the water there and on Earth had the same origins. Karen Hopkin reports
May 22, 2013
After nine (Earth) years of slowly traversing Mars, Opportunity broke the U.S. off-world rover record held by Apollo 17's lunar buggy since 1972. John Matson reports.
May 14, 2013
Silicon-rich rocky material was found around white dwarfs in the Hyades star cluster by the Hubble Space Telescope, despite the fact that almost no known planets exist in star clusters. John Matson reports
May 3, 2013
Based on the Milky Way's effect on the motion of a nearby dwarf galaxy, our galaxy seems to have more mass than we previously thought. John Matson reports
April 22, 2013
NASA's orbiting Kepler telescope recently spotted three exoplanets in or near their stars' so-called habitable zones, the temperate region where a planet could accommodate liquid water. John Matson reports
April 15, 2013
Using imagery taken by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in 2007, amateur astronomers located an object that could be a Russian lander that went dark after a few seconds on Mars in 1971. John Matson reports
April 8, 2013
Saturn's rings and moons contain a uniform distribution of water ice, which seems to reflect their common origins billions of years ago. John Matson reports
March 25, 2013
New data from the European Planck satellite indicate that the universe is 13.8 billion years old rather than a mere 13.7 billion years old. John Matson reports
March 19, 2013
An incomplete version of Chile's ALMA telescope array found that star formation was in full swing earlier than had been thought. John Matson reports
March 14, 2013
A study of the star HD 140283, only about 190 light-years away from us, finds that it formed in short order after the big bang. John Matson reports
March 5, 2013
The Van Allen Probes recently found a third belt of charged particles circling Earth, which was then destroyed by a solar shock wave. John Matson reports
February 27, 2013
Heat radiating from an asteroid imparts a tiny push to the rock, meaning that we could subtly steer an asteroid by changing its reflectance. John Matson reports
February 16, 2013
The Russian city of Chelyabinsk was awakened on February 15 when a meteor exploded overhead, with an energy equivalent to about 300 kilotons of TNT
February 13, 2013
Even as a few of its sensors cause problems, the Curiosity rover became the first robotic visitor to bore into the Martian surface. John Matson reports
February 4, 2013
The star TW Hydrae should be too old to still have planets forming around it, but its gas and dust indicate it still has planetary potential. John Matson reports
January 21, 2013
Tree-ring data from A.D. 774 show a sudden spike in radioactive carbon 14, pointing to a burst of charged particles or high-energy radiation that struck Earth. A relatively nearby gamma-ray burst could be the culprit. John Matson reports
January 14, 2013
After a few false alarms, the star SN 2009ip appears to have gone supernova at last. John Matson reports
January 7, 2013
Six volunteers spent 520 days in a simulation of a trip to Mars, and wound up experiencing sleep disturbances and becoming more sedentary. John Matson reports
January 4, 2013
Opening the door to the paying public means that less healthy individuals will soon have access to space--if their doctors approve. John Matson reports
December 17, 2012
The Cassini orbiter spotted a river system on Titan that NASA likens to a miniature version of the Nile River, but flowing with liquid ethane and methane. John Matson reports
December 10, 2012
NASA has plans for another Mars rover, but no trips scheduled for exotic places like Titan or Europa. John Matson reports
December 5, 2012
A proof-of-concept 3-D printing job using lunarlike material shows that quick-and-dirty tools or spare parts could be manufactured on the moon. John Matson reports
November 28, 2012
Global 3-D climate simulations for plausible Martian atmospheres show that even with a much thicker CO2 layer, the greenhouse effect could not have warmed Mars above freezing. John Matson reports.
November 20, 2012
Thanks to gravitational lensing by a cluster of galaxies, the light emitted by a small galaxy 13.3 billion years ago has reached Earth. John Matson reports
November 13, 2012
A planet at least seven times as massive as Earth orbits comfortably in the habitable zone of the star HD 40307. John Matson reports
November 6, 2012
Fomalhaut b looked like an exoplanet to some astronomers and like dust to others. But new analyses strengthen the planet view. John Matson reports
October 23, 2012
A chemical analysis of lunar samples now points to the solar wind being behind the ultrathin dusting of water molecules first detected in 2009 from spacecraft measurements. John Matson reports
October 15, 2012
An analysis of the Huygens probe's sensor data has reconstructed bouncing and skidding, moments before it came to rest on Titan. John Matson reports
October 5, 2012
A star orbiting the galactic center's black hole in just 11.5 Earth years should provide data for studying how gravity works near an extremely massive object. John Matson reports
October 1, 2012
Smaller ground-based telescopes produce research results that get more citations per dollar spent than the big guys. John Matson reports
September 25, 2012
UV light, which radiates from stars and galaxies, can induce rapid changes in icy hydrocarbon molecules cooled to 5 kelvins, as on a comet. John Matson reports
September 17, 2012
In the J0651 binary system two white dwarf stars orbit each other in less than 13 minutes--and it's getting a little faster all the time. John Matson reports
September 12, 2012
On September 5th NASA's Dawn spacecraft left the asteroid Vesta and set sail for the dwarf planet Ceres, where it will arrive in 2015. John Matson reports
September 5, 2012
NASA's infrared WISE spacecraft found about 130 glowing black holes in a small region of space, meaning that at least two million active black holes dot the sky. John Matson reports
August 29, 2012
Only about 0.5 percent of Milky Way-like galaxies have companions like our satellite galaxies, the Magellanic Clouds. John Matson reports
August 20, 2012
The twin Radiation Belt Storm Probes will fly through the Van Allen Belts for two years, measuring charged particles, plasma waves and magnetic fields. John Matson reports
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