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Solar System, Sky Watching, Meteor Showers
Dec 30, 2016
Earth will pass through a stream of debris from comet 2003 EH1 on January 3, 2017, producing a shower of meteors known as the Quadrantids.
Sun, Solar System
Dec 22, 2014
Dec 22, 2014:   According to the calendar, Christmas comes on Thursday, Dec. 25th. For backyard sky watchers, however, the holiday starts earlier. They're getting planets for Christmas—and the show begins on Dec. 22nd. When the sun goes down on Monday before Christmas, Venus and a... Read More
Universe
Dec 19, 2014
Dec 19, 2014:  The European Space Agency’s orbiting Rosetta spacecraft is expected to come within four miles (six kilometers) of the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko in February of next year. The flyby will be the closest the comet explorer will come during its prime mission.
Earth
Dec 19, 2014
Dec. 19, 2014: The first global maps of atmospheric carbon dioxide from NASA's new Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 mission show elevated carbon dioxide concentrations across the Southern Hemisphere from springtime biomass burning and hint at potential surprises to come.
Earth, Solar System
Dec 19, 2014
Dec. 19, 2014: NASA and an international team of planetary scientists have found evidence in meteorites on Earth that indicates Mars has a distinct and global reservoir of water or ice near its surface.
Universe
Dec 18, 2014
Dec. 18, 2014: NASA's planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft is making a comeback with the discovery of the first exoplanet found using its new mission -- K2. The discovery was made when astronomers and engineers devised an ingenious way to repurpose Kepler for the K2 mission and continue its... Read More
Earth
Dec 16, 2014
Dec. 16, 2014: It will take about 11 trillion gallons of water (42 cubic kilometers) -- around 1.5 times the maximum volume of the largest U.S. reservoir -- to recover from California's continuing drought, according to a new analysis of NASA satellite data.
Sun
Dec 16, 2014
Dec. 16, 2014:  Since 2012, NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has experienced three 'tsunami waves' in interstellar space.  The most recent, which reached the spacecraft earlier this year, is still propagating outward according to new data. It is the longest-lasting shock wave that researchers... Read More
Earth, Solar System
Dec 16, 2014
Dec. 16, 2014: NASA's Mars Curiosity rover has measured a tenfold spike in methane, an organic chemical, in the atmosphere around it and detected other organic molecules in a rock-powder sample collected by the robotic laboratory’s drill.
Universe
Dec 14, 2014
Dec. 14, 2014: Where did our planet get its oceans? Among planetary scientists, this is one of the most important and perplexing questions about the origins of Earth. One popular theory holds that water was brought to Earth by the ancient impacts of comets and asteroids. However,... Read More
Solar System
Dec 14, 2014
Dec. 14, 2014: Observations by NASA’s Curiosity Rover indicate Mars' Mount Sharp was built by sediments deposited in a large lake bed over tens of millions of years. This suggests ancient Mars maintained a climate that could have produced long-lasting lakes at many locations on the Red Planet.
Solar System
Dec 12, 2014
Earth is passing through a stream of debris from "rock comet" 3200 Phaethon, source of the annual Geminid meteor shower. Forecasters expect as many as 120 meteors per hour when the shower peaks on Dec. 13-14.
ScienceCasts: Embers from a Rock Comet: The 2014 Geminid Meteor Shower
Sun, Solar System
Dec 12, 2014
Dec. 12, 2014: December has arrived, and for backyard sky watchers that means one thing:  It is time for the annual Geminid meteor shower. Every year in early December, Earth passes through a stream of gravelly, dusty debris from "rock comet" 3200 Phaethon.  This causes a meteor shower that... Read More
Solar System
Dec 7, 2014
Dec. 7, 2014: After a voyage of nearly nine years and three billion miles —the farthest any space mission has ever traveled to reach its primary target – NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft came out of hibernation on Dec. 6th for its long-awaited 2015 encounter with the Pluto system.
Solar System
Dec 5, 2014
Dec. 5, 2014: NASA marked a major milestone Friday on its journey to Mars as the Orion spacecraft completed its first voyage to space, traveling farther than any spacecraft designed for astronauts has been in more than 40 years.