April 20, 2017

Hubble Observes First Multiple Images Of Explosive Distance Indicator

This composite image shows the gravitationally lensed type Ia supernova iPTF16geu, as seen with different telescopes. The background image shows a wide-field view of the night sky as seen with the Palomar Observatory located on Palomar Mountain, California. The leftmost image shows observations made with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The central image was taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and shows the lensing galaxy SDSS J210415.89-062024.7. The rightmost image was also taken with Hubble and depicts the four lensed images of the supernova explosion, surrounding the lensing galaxy. Image Credit: ESA/Hubble, NASA, Sloan Digital Sky Survey, Palomar Observatory/California Institute of Technology

April 20, 2017 – An international team, led by astronomers from the Stockholm University, Sweden, has discovered a distant type Ia supernova, called iPTF16geu — it took the light 4.3 billion years to travel to Earth. The light from this particular supernova was bent and magnified by the effect of gravitational lensing so that it was split into four separate images on the sky. Read More


Airmen Turn Teens Into StellarXplorers

April 20, 2017 – Buckley Air Force Base Airmen volunteered to mentor two teams from a local high school for the Air Force Association’s StellarXplorers National High School Space Competition at the Space Foundation Discovery Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Read More


A Moment With Jack Fischer


Hubble Celebrates 27 Years With Two Close Friends

A close galactic pair. Image Credit: NASA/ESA

April 20, 2017 – This stunning cosmic pairing of the two very different looking spiral galaxies NGC 4302 and NGC 4298 was imaged by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. The image brilliantly captures their warm stellar glow and brown, mottled patterns of dust. As a perfect demonstration of Hubble’s capabilities, this spectacular view has been released as part of the telescope’s 27th anniversary celebrations. Read More


Kepler Scientist On Time Magazine’s Most Influential List

Time magazine has named NASA’s Kepler mission project scientist Natalie Batalha to the Time 100, its annual list of the 100 most influential people on Earth. Image Credit: NASA Ames/W. Stenzel

April 20, 2017 – A NASA scientist searching for other worlds has been named one of the most influential people on our world. Time magazine has named Kepler project scientist Natalie Batalha to the Time 100, its annual list of the 100 most influential people on Earth. Natalie shares this honor this year with planet-hunters Guillem Anglada-Escudé of the Queen Mary University of London, who discovered an Earth-size planet orbiting Proxima Centauri in 2016, and Michaël Gillon of the University of Liège in Belgium, who recently announced the discovery of seven Earth-size planets orbiting Trappist-1 using NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope. Read More


Two New Crew Members Arrive At International Space Station

Expedition 51 Soyuz Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin of Roscosmos and Flight Engineer Jack Fischer of NASA wave farewell prior to boarding the Soyuz MS-04 spacecraft for launch April 20, 2017, at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Image Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

April 20, 2017 – After a six-hour flight, Colorado astronaut Jack Fischer and cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin of the Russian space agency Roscosmos arrived at the International Space Station at 7:18 a.m. MDT Thursday where they will continue important scientific research. Read More


More News:

Soyuz Crew’s Official And Unofficial Mission Patches Draw From Space History
Source: collectSPACE

The two latest crewmates to arrive at the International Space Station are steeped in space history — at least symbolically. o represent their launch together, Fischer and Yurchikhin worked with artists to design two distinct mission patches …


Longmont Space Symposium Draws Crowd Of Young Recruits
Source: Boulder Daily Camera

Rubber-band powered plastic rockets bounced off ceilings and walls in the normally quiet Plaza Convention Center in Longmont on Wednesday morning as hundreds of students learned first-hand the work of some of the country’s top aerospace companies.


Lockheed Martin On Cutting Costs With Virtual Reality
Source: Via Satellite

Lockheed Martin is saving $10 million a year by implementing Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR, AR) tools in the production line of its space assets. “And a lot of folks would say that’s a conservative estimate, including myself,” Darin Bolthouse, engineering manager at Lockheed Martin, said in an interview with Via Satellite.


Breakthrough Listen Initiative Publishes Initial Results
Source: Breakthrough Initiatives

Breakthrough Listen – the initiative to find signs of intelligent life in the universe – has released its 11 events ranked highest for significance as well as summary data analysis results. It is considered unlikely that any of these signals originate from artificial extraterrestrial sources, but the search continues.


Rare Brightening Of A Supernova’s Light Found By Palomar Observatory
Source: Caltech

An international team of astronomers has, for the first time, seen a cosmic magnification of the light from a class of supernova called Type Ia. Type Ia supernovas—often referred to as “standard candles” because of their well-known intrinsic brightness—are frequently used by astronomers to accurately measure the expansion rate of our universe, as well as the amount of dark energy, which is thought to be accelerating this expansion.


Massive Exoplanet Discovered Using Gravitational Microlensing Method
Source: Phys.org

Astronomers have found a new massive alien world using the gravitational microlensing technique. The newly detected exoplanet, designated MOA-2016-BLG-227Lb, is about three times more massive than Jupiter and orbits a distant star approximately 21,000 light years away.


Cruz To Hold Hearing On Expanding American Free Enterprise In Space
Source: U.S. Senate

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), chairman of the Subcommittee on Space, Science, and Competitiveness, will convene a hearing titled “Reopening the American Frontier: Reducing Regulatory Barriers and Expanding American Free Enterprise in Space” at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. This hearing will examine the Commercial Space Launch Competitiveness Act signed into law in November 2015, potential regulatory barriers to address in future legislation, and ways to expand commercial opportunities for American firms in space.


Congressional Statements On Enactment Of Weather Research And Forecasting Innovation Act
Source: U.S. House of Representatives/U.S. Senate

Leaders on the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, which exercise legislative jurisdiction in their respective chambers over the National Weather Service (NWS), today issued the following statements on the announcement last night that President Donald Trump has signed into law H.R. 353, the Weather Research and Forecasting Innovation Act of 2017.


NASA’s Mars Rover Opportunity Leaves ‘Tribulation’
Source: NASA

NASA’s senior Mars rover, Opportunity, is departing “Cape Tribulation,” a crater-rim segment it has explored since late 2014, southbound for its next destination, “Perseverance Valley.” The rover team plans observations in the valley to determine what type of fluid activity carved it billions of years ago: water, wind, or flowing debris lubricated by water.


Living With A Star: NASA And Partners Survey Space Weather Science
Source: NASA

NASA has long been a leader in understanding the science of space weather, including research into the potential for induced electrical currents to disrupt our power systems. Last year, NASA scientists worked with scientists and engineers from research institutions and industry during a pair of intensive week-long workshops in order to assess the state of science surrounding this type of space weather. This summary was published January 30, 2017, in the journal Space Weather.


Video: Expedition 51-52 Launches to the International Space Station
Source: NASA

Expedition 51-52 Soyuz Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin of Roscosmos and Flight Engineer Jack Fischer of NASA launched on the Russian Soyuz MS-04 spacecraft April 20 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to begin a six-hour journey to the International Space Station and the start of a four and a half month mission on the outpost.


Video: Expedition 51-52 Crew Meets Officials And Reporters As Launch Approaches
Source: NASA

At their Cosmonaut Hotel crew quarters in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, Expedition 51-52 Soyuz Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin of Roscosmos and Flight Engineer Jack Fischer of NASA along with their backups, Sergey Ryazanskiy of Roscomos and Randy Bresnik of NASA appeared before the Russian State Commission April 19 as officials gave their final approval for the launch of Yurchikhin and Fischer to the International Space Station April 20 in their Soyuz MS-04 spacecraft for a four and a half month mission. After the State Commission meeting, the crew members conducted a news conference with reporters attending the launch.


NASA Eyes Fusion Reactor Engines, Extraterrestrial Drilling, Other Far-Out Technologies With Latest Investment Selections
Source: NASA

NASA has selected 399 research and technology proposals from 277 American small businesses and 44 research institutions that will enable NASA’s future missions into deep space, and advancements in aviation and science, while also benefiting the U.S. economy. The awards have a total value of approximately $49.9 million.


Long Range Discrimination Radar Program Led by Lockheed Martin Achieves Preliminary Design Review On-Schedule
Source: Lockheed Martin

Less than 18 months from contract award, the Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR), developed by Lockheed Martin, passed Preliminary Design Review (PDR), indicating that detailed design on the radar system can move forward. The radar system will support a layered ballistic missile defense strategy to protect the U.S. homeland from ballistic missile attacks.


Spaceport Colorado Awaits FAA Licensing Decision Later This Year
Source: Defense Daily Network

Colorado hopes to have an answer from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on its spaceport site operator license application later this year, according to a key official.Spaceport Colorado Airport Director Dave Ruppel told Defense Daily Wednesday that paperwork …


Natalie Batalha, Guillem Anglada-Escudé And Michaël Gillon
Source: Time/Alan Stern

Human beings have long wondered whether they are alone in the universe. Now we are closer than ever to getting an answer. That’s thanks in large part to the astronomers who are searching for exoplanets—planets orbiting other stars—that could be home to life.


With An Eye On Growing Cost, NASA Aims For 2025 Launch Of Next ‘Great Observatory’
Source: Spaceflight Now

NASA managers say the WFIRST mission, the next in the agency’s line of powerful observatories after the Hubble and James Webb telescopes, could cost around $3.2 billion after budgeting for a novel first-of-its-kind instrument to probe the make-up of planets around nearby stars and a bigger-than-expected launch vehicle.


NASA’s Study Of Adding Crew To EM-1 is Completed, Awaiting Response
Source: SpacePolicyOnline.com

NASA Acting Chief Scientist Gale Allen said today that the agency’s feasibility study of adding a crew to the first launch of the Space Launch System (SLS) and Orion has been completed and briefed to agency and White House officials. The report is not public, she added, and the agency is now waiting for a “go forward” plan.