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Rocket Science Sunday: NASA Launches Atmospheric Probe into Earth Orbit

2 weeks agoGenres / Sci Fi : TrekMovie.com

With the launch of  the Orbiting Carbon Observatory (or or OCO-2), NASA has taken the first step towards the kind of ‘Treknology’ we are used to seeing in our favorite fictional future. TrekMovie was at the launch as part of a NASA Social event, plus we were lucky enough to catch an inspiring speech from […]

NASA's New Satellite Could Unravel the Mystery of Our Changing Climate

4 weeks agoGenres / Sci Fi : io9

Right now, io9's Mika McKinnon is at the launch for the Orbiting Carbon Observatory, a satellite which will track where the Earth draws carbon out of the atmosphere. It could give us hints about why the climate is changing — and how we can intervene more quickly. Here's how the OCO works. Read more...

NASA finds mysterious signal that baffles astronomers

NASA's Chandra X-ray observatory has found a mysterious X-ray signal that astronomers are speculating could signal the presence of dark matter some 240 million light years away from Earth. A leading theory, NASA reports, is that the X-rays are a result of decaying "sterile neutrinos," which are particles that could potentially produce dark matter. Show More Summary

New NASA space observatory to study carbon conundrums

NASA's first spacecraft dedicated to measuring carbon dioxide levels in Earth's atmosphere is in final preparations for a July 1 launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. The Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) mission will...Show More Summary

NASA installs space laser on the ISS, uses it to transmit high-speed data back to Earth

NASA has successfully completed the first test of the International Space Station's new OPALS laser communications system. OPALS links the ISS to an observatory here on Earth at very high speeds (around 50 megabits per second), allowing for the real-time transmission of high-resolution video among other things. Show More Summary

Researcher ‘has a problem’ with attributing West Antarctic Ice Sheet ‘collapse’ to human activity

From NASA JPL and Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, something that maybe journo-hacktivist Susanne Goldenberg should pay attention to before she writes another screed. Reports that a portion of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet has begun to irretrievably collapse, threatening a 4-foot … Continue reading ?

This Could Be A Horrific Year For El Niño

3 months agoGenres / Sci Fi : io9

NASA's Earth Observatory posted these two comparison images of sea surface patterns in May of 1997, before that year's infamously terrible El Niño, and this month. The images are startlingly similar, suggesting we might be on the precipice of another tough El Niño year. Read more...

The Reason for the Earth’s Seasons as Explained From Space

4 months agoOdd : Laughing Squid

The reason for the Earth’s seasons is succinctly explained using space imagery in this 2011 video from NASA Earth Observatory. As the year goes on, and the Sun’s rays hit the Earth differently based on the planet’s relative position to the sun, the seasons change. Winter in a hemisphere is essentially a lack of sunlight. [...]

Lightning the World

4 months agoUnited States / Seattle : Slog

In this post, NASA's Earth Observatory drops some facts on the cause, detection, and number of lightning bolts in our active atmosphere:Across the atmosphere of Earth, lightning flashes about 50 times per second. That’s 4.3 million times a day and roughly 1.5 billion times a year. Show More Summary

NASA's Earth Photo of the Year: Puny Islands Float in the Turbulent Sea

4 months agoTechnology / Gadgets : Gizmodo

Since it's basketball bracket season, NASA's Earth Observatory has been running a tournament of its own, putting a year's worth of great satellite images in head-to-head competition. The winner is a stunner. Read more...

One Map Explaining Why This Winter Wasn't Nearly As Bad As You Thought

4 months agoGenres / Sci Fi : io9

This was one weird, long, cold winter — at least it certainly felt that way. But this map, put together by NASA's Earth Observatory, tells a different story. Read more...

Chandra and XMM-Newton provide direct measurement of distant black hole's spin

Astronomers have used NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and the European Space Agency's (ESA's) XMM-Newton to show a supermassive black hole six billion light years from Earth is spinning extremely rapidly. This first direct measurement of the spin of such a distant black hole is an important advance for understanding how black holes grow over time.

LADEE sends Its first images of the moon back to Earth

Earlier this month, NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) observatory successfully downlinked images of the moon and stars taken by onboard camera systems, known as star trackers. This is the first time the LADEE team commanded the spacecraft to send these pictures back to Earth. read more

WIRED Space Photo of the Day: Black Holes Jet

Just weeks after NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory began operations in 1999, the telescope pointed at Centaurus A (Cen A, for short). This galaxy, at a distance of about 12 million light years from Earth, contains a gargantuan jet blasting away...

NASA Photos Reveal the World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm from Space

The London Array is the world's largest offshore wind farm - and it looks even more amazing from space. NASA Earth Observatory just released these beautiful images of the array, which is located off the coast of Kent in England. The images show the vast expanse

Gorgeous Underwater Sand Dunes (Or How Earth Never Ceases To Amaze Me)

The underwater world is a strange and haunting one. This NASA Earth Observatory photograph captures the ethereal beauty of underwater sand dunes in the Bahamas. Tides and ocean currents shape the underwater sand much like wind on land, but the result is just different enough to be otherworldly. More »      

Another Extreme Winter Image: The Missouri River, Frozen

Today, NASA’s Earth Observatory brings us this beautiful image of the Missouri River taken from the International Space Station. Its one of its bends occupied by Lake Sharpe, an approximately 130km-long reservoir “formed behind the Big Bend Dam”. More »      

A map showing just how freaky this winter really is

7 months agoGenres / Sci Fi : io9

Weather-wise, this has been a rather strange and memorable winter. A North American polar vortex and frigid Mars-like temperatures will do that. As this new NASA Earth Observatory map beautifully illustrates, it has been an anomalous winter, indeed. Read more...

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