Tagged: NASA

A new crater on the Moon - Out of Space

Duncan Steel May 21, 2019

The scar on the lunar surface produced when the Israeli space probe ‘Beresheet’ slammed into the Moon on April 11 has just been spotted using an orbiting NASA satellite.  Three nations have so far landed spacecraft on the Moon: the USA, the Soviet Union/Russia, and China. A fourth nation, Israel, has attempted to join this club, but its probe (named Beresheet) … Read More

Imagine an asteroid impact due in 2027: How would you tackle it?   - Out of Space

Duncan Steel May 09, 2019

It’s now scientifically possible to predict potential asteroid impacts years in advance. But knowing that such a calamitous event is going to occur, due to the clockwork of the heavens, presents its own problems. Can we divert it, and if so, how? Similarly, if the impact is inevitable, can we model what is going to happen far ahead of time, … Read More

Space Station and docked Dragon capsule visible throughout NZ - Out of Space

Duncan Steel Mar 04, 2019

As I write, the Dragon capsule – a spacecraft intended to loft US astronauts into orbit – has been docked with the Space Station for almost 18 hours on its initial test flight. It happens that you will be able to see the station plus capsule passing over New Zealand each evening for the next week or so, before the … Read More

Colonising Mars means contaminating Mars – and never knowing for sure if it had its own native life - Guest Work

Guest Author Nov 20, 2018

David Weintraub, Vanderbilt University The closest place in the universe where extraterrestrial life might exist is Mars, and human beings are poised to attempt to colonise this planetary neighbour within the next decade. Before that happens, we need to recognise that a very real possibility exists that the first human steps on the Martian surface will lead … Read More

Rover detects ancient organic material on Mars – and it could be trace of past life - Guest Work

Guest Author Jun 08, 2018

Monica Grady, The Open University It was to a great fanfare of publicity that researchers announced they had found evidence for past life on Mars in 1996. What they claimed they had discovered was a fossilised micro-organism in a Martian meteorite, which they argued was evidence that there has once been life on the Red Planet. Sadly, … Read More

Launching in May, the InSight mission will measure marsquakes to explore the interior of Mars - Guest Work

Guest Author Apr 30, 2018

Katarina Miljkovic, Curtin University This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. When we look up at Mars in the night sky we see a red planet – largely due to its rusty surface. But what’s on the inside? Launching in May, the next NASA space mission will study the interior … Read More

Take it from me: I’m not signing up to become a space tourist just yet… - Guest Work

Guest Author Apr 11, 2018

Rowena Christiansen, University of Melbourne This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. Take it from me is a new series in Science and Technology, where we find an expert to provide a personal but informed perspective on a topical issue. Elon Musk’s SpaceX reportedly has two people signed up for a … Read More

Jupiter: scientists spot pentagon pattern of cyclones – and unlock secrets of the planet’s interior - Guest Work

Guest Author Mar 09, 2018

Andrew Coates, UCL This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. We all recognise Jupiter by its banded pattern of counter-rotating zones and belts – this can be seen even with small garden telescopes. These stunning structures are powered by fast jet streams that are visible in the planet’s clouds. But what … Read More

A brief history of Martian exploration – as the InSight Lander prepares to launch - Guest Work

Guest Author Feb 22, 2018

Helen Maynard-Casely, Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Roughly every two years Mars and Earth wander a bit closer to each other, making the leap between these two planets a little easier. In July this year, Mars will only be about 58 million kilometres away – and NASA is set to take advantage by launching their next mission … Read More