The US Air Force's $3.5bn Space Fence surveillance system is designed to detect satellites and debris in low Earth orbit, and its first radar station will be based in the Marshall Islands.
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The predicted impact on the Earth of the Sun's recent energetic Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) happened on Thursday at 1100 GMT, the American National Weather Service's Space Weather Center has reported."The coronal mass ejection (CME) associated with the R3 (Strong) Radio Blackout event from 0024 UTC March 7 (7:24 p.
The six windows of the International Space Station's cupola observation deck provide stunning panoramic views of Earth
Wondering what to do with that old clunker of a digital camera you've got in your drawer? Try taking photos of space with it. Three enterprising MIT students have successfully launched and retrieved a digital camera in order to snap photos of the earth from the upper atmosphere -- and they did it all for under $150.
Life on earth came, if not from ancient astronauts, in part from outer space.NASA astronauts scientists have discovered an amino acid, glycine, essential for life on earth, on a comet, confirming a long-held theory that the building blocks for life came from outer space, Info Week reports.
An inflatable free standing tower could one day carry equipment and tourists 20 kilometers above Earth, and it could be completed much sooner than a cable-based space elevator, say researchers at York University in Toronto, Canada.They envision a giant tower assembled with a series of modules made up of Kevlar-polyethylene composite tubes that would be made rigid by inflating them with a lightweight gas such as hydrogen or helium.
A true landmark in Twitter PR: Astronaut Mike Massimino has delivered two tweets from space back to all of us on planet Earth. He's not floating in a tin can, though; he's getting ready to work on the Hubble Space Telescope.
Non-profit children's environmental awareness group Earth Rangers, working together with Dell, Nortel, Pillar Data Systems and VMware, managed to shrink a new data center into one-tenth the space that it COULD have claimed in its LEED Gold-certified building.At only 100 square feet in size, the data center will support the organization's new EarthRangers.
Some good space-based militaria has arrived on that reliable source of interesting intel, Wikileaks. An unclassified document (PDF) from the US Space and Missile Systems Center ponders long and hard about how to create robust, affordable communications in Earth orbit.
According to Canadian engineers at Queen's University, there are now more than 8,000 satellites in orbit around the Earth. Of course, if they stop to work correctly, these satellites will not be able to be repaired from the ground and will become space junk. So these researchers have developed a robotic repair system to fix ailing satellites. Right now, they're writing software to track these satellites. Their tracking software would then be used by an Autonomous Space Servicing Vehicle (ASSV) 'to grasp the ailing satellite from its orbit and draw it into the repair vehicle's bay. Once there, remote control from the ground station can be used for the repair.' I'm somewhat skeptical about the idea, considering that the satellites in orbit have been launched by various countries and companies using very different technologies. But read more...
Northwestern University researchers have developed new transistors which are currently tested on the International Space Station (ISS) to see how they react to cosmic radiation. These transistors, which are using a new kind of gate dielectric material called a self-assembled nanodielectric (SAND), are exposed to radiation outside the ISS since March 22, 2008, and will stay there for one year. According to the researchers, these new transistors could be used 'on long space missions since early experiments on Earth indicate that the transistors hold up well when exposed to radiation.' But read more...
An international team of scientists has found a strange ring around a dead star by using images taken by NASA's Spitzer space telescope. This star, called SGR 1900+14, belongs to a class of objects known as magnetars. According to NASA, a magnetar is 'a highly magnetized neutron star and the remnant of a brilliant supernova explosion signaling the death throes of a massive star.' So far, about a dozen magnetars have been found. An amazing thing about these stellar objects is their magnetic field. One of the researchers said that 'magnetars possess magnetic fields a million billion times stronger than the magnetic field of the Earth.' But read more...
As you can guess, hardwired computer systems are much faster than general-purpose ones because they are designed to do a single task. But when they fail, they need to be totally reconfigured. This can be just a costly problem in a lab on Earth, but it can be vital in space. This is why a University of Arizona (UA) team is working with NASA to design self-healing computer systems for spacecraft. The UA engineers are working on hybrid hardware/software systems using Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) to develop these reconfigurable processing systems. As said the lead researcher, 'Our objective is to go beyond predicting a fault to using a self-healing system to fix the predicted fault before it occurs.' But read more...
According to the Institute of Physics (IOP), European researchers have successfully identified individual returning photons from space 'after firing and reflecting them off of a space satellite in orbit almost 1,500 kilometers above the earth.' This experiment could lead to a global quantum-encrypted communications network in the future. In other words, we could one day have access to completely secure channels for global communications via satellites in space. But read more...
Google launched the new Google Theme API a couple weeks ago -- but today was the first update of the directory. There are now 49 different themes to choose from -- including my new favorite "Live Planet - Northern Hemisphere" that shows you how the earth would be illuminated right now if you were to view it from space.
Last week, I wrote that NASA was checking coastal waters from space. It seems that NASA wants to appear as a very environmental-friendly organization. It is helping the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) with airplanes monitoring great lakes algae. It also is collaborating with the U.S. Forest Service on wildfire imaging missions. NASA is using an unmanned aircraft named 'Ikhana' -- a Native American word from the Choctaw Nation meaning intelligent, conscious or aware -- for imaging wildfires in California, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. Images collected from the different sensors onboard are transmitted via satellite to a ground station where they are analyzed and transmitted as a Google Earth overlay to fire experts.
Google has made it to space with their latest Google Earth software that lets you explore the heavens. It's worth noting though that a similar (and in my opinion, much better) product already existed called "Stellarium" -- it makes Google's product feel really beta.
In September 2007, the European Space Agency (ESA) will launch its Foton M3 mission from Baikonur. The spacecraft will carry the Young Engineers' Satellites (YES2) payload. The goal of this experiment is to send a 6-kilogram package from space to earth. This spherical parcel, named Fotino, will be attached at the end of a 32-kilometer-long tether. This tether, made of Dyneema, will have a thickness of only 0.4 millimeter. When it's completely deployed at an altitude of about 250 kilometers, it will be cut and Fotino will re-enter the atmosphere to land in Russia, inaugurating the first space postal service.
Pasadena, Calif.-based Ecliptic Enterprises builds cameras that are attached to rockets and space shuttles. See footage from the cameras and hear from the company's CEO, speaking to CNET News.com's Zamir Haider on Tuesday during the NASA Technology Showcase at Moffett Field in Sunnyvale, Calif.
Charles Simonyi is on his way to the International Space Station aboard Expedition 15, which blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 17:31 GMT April 7. Along with other crew members, Charles is slated to rendezvous with the space station on April 9 at 19:15 GMT.
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