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What HAS Russia spotted in Earth’s upper atmosphere? Mysterious EXPLOSIONS OF LIGHT detected by satellite hint to unknown physical phenomenon

While numerous examples of unusual space weather phenomena have been spotted in the upper atmosphere before, the team operating the Lomonosov satellite say what they’ve found may be something entirely new. Despite the occurrence of several powerful bursts, Russian scientists say there were no signs of storms in the area. The satellite, named after scientist Mikhail Lomonosov, launched in 2016 and is integrated with the Kanopus-B spacecraft. Its goal is to study high-energy cosmic rays, including gamma rays, magnetospheric particles, and transient light phenomena in the upper atmosphere. And, the scientists now say it’s spotted something odd. ‘With the help…

Dwarf Planet Ceres Hosted Near-Surface Water for Millions of Years

Some parts of the dwarf planet Ceres harbored pockets of near-surface water for millions of years in the recent past, a new study suggests. Researchers analyzed observations of Ceres’ Occator Crater made by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft, which studied the dwarf planet from orbit from March 2015 to October 2018, when the probe ran out of fuel. The 57-mile-wide (92 kilometers) Occator sports dramatic bright spots, which Dawn team members determined are salts left behind when briny water boiled away into space. This water likely began as subsurface ice, which was melted by the intense heat of the impact that created…

China Says Space Is Not U.S. ‘Private Property’

Beijing has criticized a recent U.S. report accusing China and Russia of attempting to militarize outer space, the apparent justification for President Donald Trump’s ambitious global missile defense plan. In a report published Monday, the Defense Intelligence Agency found that “China and Russia, in particular, have taken steps to challenge the United States” in space, including through the development of weaponized satellites, energy weapons and surveillance networks. Such accusations previously appeared in Trump’s 2019 Missile Defense Review, which, among other things, called for the installation of space-based missile interceptors. Reacting to the report, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said Tuesday:…

Report: Space will likely be a battlefield in any U.S. conflict with China, Russia

A new U.S. intelligence report warns that both China and Russia are investing in weapons that could attack U.S. satellites and assets in space, and that both nations are now preparing to use space as a battlefield. Last month, the Defense Intelligence Agency released a report about China’s military capabilities, warning that the Asian country was making advances in counterspace technology that could threaten U.S. satellites responsible for communications, reconnaissance, GPS and early warnings of missile launches. But a new DIA report, “Challenges to Security in Space,” warns that both China and Russia are making advances in space technology, and…

Mars One, which offered 1-way trips to Mars, declared bankrupt

Mars One, a Dutch company that planned to send humans on a one-way trip to Mars and start the first human colony on the Red Planet, has been declared bankrupt. The declaration was made in a Swiss court on Jan. 15 — and posted on Reddit this past weekend — officially dissolving Mars One Ventures AG. “We are currently working with the administrator and an investor to find a solution moving forward, though at this moment that is all we can share,” the company said in an email. The bankruptcy affects the company’s commercial arm, Mars One Ventures AG, but does not affect the…

Scientists Want to Build a Space Station Inside an Asteroid

Many space visionaries want to mine asteroids. But drilling in microgravity is hard, because exerting force on an asteroid will push you away from it. That’s what an inspired a far-out idea from scientists from University of Vienna: turning an asteroid into a space station and mining it from the inside out, according to New Scientist. Setting up Shop The best type of asteroid to build a space station inside would be made of solid rock and rotating several times per minute, according the Viennese scientists’ research, which was published in the preprint server ArXiv in December. The idea is that it would provide enough centrifugal force…

NASA to send humans to the moon once again – ‘but this time we’ll stay’

NASA is planning to take the “next giant leap in deep space exploration” as it looks to send astronauts to the moon who are able to stay there. The space agency’s administrator, Jim Bridenstine, called for American firms to help develop human lunar landers – “reusable systems for astronauts to land on the moon” – as he said scientists had been given a mandate by President Donald Trump and Congress to return to the moon for the first time since 1972. He said NASA was planning to send astronauts “to the moon and eventually to Mars and beyond” and that…

NASA Is Going to Knock an Asteroid Out of Orbit in First-Ever Planetary Defense Test

As over-the-top as movies like Armageddon and Deep Impact may be, they do get across a very non-fictional message: you definitely don’t want to be around if and when an actual big honkin’ asteroid smacks into Earth. Even the tiny interlopers that crash into our planet every now and then can do some crazy and violent damage to entire cities. Fortunately, the folks at NASA are on the case, and they’re preparing to launch a mission to test new tech designed to deflect life-threatening asteroids. In what’s being touted as the first-ever test of a true planetary defense system, NASA has teamed…

A Fifth Dimension Could Make Star Trek Discovery’s Spore Drive Physically Possible

There are a few rules in the Universe that seem likely to never be broken. Particles cannot travel faster than the speed of light in a vacuum; the entropy of a closed system can never decrease; energy and momentum must be conserved. But if the rules that the Universe plays by are different than we understand them today, many things that appear to be forbidden today may be possible after all. In Star Trek: Discovery, a new type of technology takes us even faster than warp drive: the spore drive. Instead of traveling slower-than-light (via impulse engines) or even faster-than-light through space…

Our sun will become a solid crystal in about 10 billion years

The universe is made up of some serious bling. Researchers at the University of Warwick have discovered the first direct evidence of whole stars solidifying into giant crystals, and it could forever change how we understand the lifecycles of stars like our sun, reports Phys.org. The evidence, which is largely based on observations taken with the European Space Agency’s Gaia satellite, focuses on observations of about 15,000 white dwarf stars. White dwarfs are what lower mass stars become once they have exhausted all their central nuclear fuel. Our sun is slated to become a white dwarf once its fuel runs…

Asteroids are smacking Earth twice as often as before

Giant rocks from space are falling from the sky more than they used to, but don’t worry. For the past 290 million years, large asteroids have been crashing into Earth more than twice as often as they did in the previous 700 million years, according to a new study in Thursday’s journal Science . But no need to cast a wary glance up. Asteroids still only smack Earth on average every million or few million years, even with the increased crash rate. NASA’s list of potential big space rock crashes shows no pending major threats. The biggest known risk is…

Is Earth on the verge of undergoing a magnetic pole shift? Scientists say SOON

This place we all call home, Earth, is currently in the throes of some serious magnetic turmoil. And scientists are now warning that we’re possibly in for a very rough ride in the months and years ahead, as our North and South Poles are actually moving from their formerly fixed points. According to a paper recently published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature, what’s happening is that magnetic North Pole is traveling away from Canada and towards Siberia – and it’s doing this so quickly that scientists are now having to issue emergency updates to the maps used by electronic navigation…

Space Bacteria is Mutating Inside the International Space Station

“These are stressful, harsh conditions. Does the environment select for superbugs because they have an advantage?” The “stressful, harsh conditions” are the inside of the International Space Station … conditions that the Russian space program suggested last year could drive a lonely and stressed astronaut to sabotage the ship by drilling a tiny hole (unproven and unlikely but the cause of the hole in the attached Soyuz capsule is still up in the air – pun intended) in order to trigger an emergency and be sent home. If the conditions on the ISS are bad for humans, what about their…

A city in China wants to launch an artificial moon into orbit by 2020 — here’s what would happen if Earth really did have two moons

A city in China wants to launch an artificial moon into orbit by 2020 as a way to reduce energy needs by replacing street light with artificial moonlight. Regardless of whether or not they succeed, their ambitious idea really made us wonder… What would happen if Earth had two moons? Well, it wouldn’t be pretty. Imagine the Moon’s identical twin comes hurtling by and is trapped by Earth’s gravity. As it settles into orbit, halfway between Earth and our original moon, it yanks violently at the oceans. In the real world, this is how our original Moon helps generate tides.…

Outer space gold rush has Wall Street eyeing the moon

Investors looking to cash in on the new space gold rush should keep their eye on the moon, according to a new note from analysts at Morgan Stanley. The moon is increasingly seen as a national security issue, with countries including the U.S. and China, as well as a number of private firms, honing in on its strategic location and large deposits of critical minerals and water. Morgan Stanley’s analysts dubbed China’s recent landing on the far side of the moon a “Sputnik moment” for the U.S., and said the event is likely to spur investment in the new space economy. “The moon is…

NASA to crash 13,500mph spacecraft into ASTEROID

The US space agency is working on the most fiery and crucial stage of its Double Asteroid Redirection Test, DART. The experiment will be the latest in NASA’s mission to protect Earth from deadly asteroid strikes. In 2021, it aims to fully test the new defence system by smashing a spaceship into a rock at 13,500mph (6 km per second). Space experts are worried an asteroid could potentially smash into earth causing catastrophic damage. Depending on the size of the rock, it could cause a mass extinction event – like the type that wiped out dinosaurs – by sparking a…

Large Cloud Galaxy on a Collision Course With the Milky Way

We’re all gonna die! A rogue cloud galaxy is coming and it’s going to smash into the Milky Way, make its black hole bigger and knock our planet out of the galaxy like a bocce ball! Well, yes, yes, yes and possibly … although the people riding Earth as it hurdles through space will not be us. While astronomers have always known that galaxies can and do collide and the Milky Way is on a slow crash course towards Andromeda, new models have found a more immediate danger from something called the Large Magellanic Cloud which is headed our way…

NASA’S OSIRIS REX ARRIVES AT BENNU ASTEROID…

This story was one of the top stories  that people passed along this week. NASA’s Osiris-Rex asteroid probe has arrived at the asteroid Bennu, and nothing about this mission seems – to me at least – “normal.” Forget all the Egyptian lore-trappings around the mission, Osiris-Rex, standing for Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith EXplorer.  It’s the strange little asteroid itself, plus the curiously worded beginning of this article, that intrigues: NASA spacecraft arrives at ancient asteroid, its 1st visitor BEsides being diamond-shaped (from one angle) with what appears to be a parallel set of “craters” running along its equator,…

A start-up wants a woman to deliver a child in space

The moment has arrived at last. A woman in a hospital gown steels herself, ready to push. A nearby monitor displays her baby’s heart rate in big, neon numbers. A nurse in crisp scrubs coos in her ear, offering words of encouragement, advice. The scene would resemble any other delivery room if it weren’t for the view outside the window: the soft curvature of the blue Earth against the blackness of space, 250 miles below. Delivering a child in microgravity may sound like science fiction. But for one start-up, it’s the future. SpaceLife Origin, based  in the Netherlands, wants to…

Multiple Scientists Publish Papers Suggesting The Moon Is Hollow & Artificially Made

It is not out of the question that artifacts of these visits still exist, or even that some kind of base is maintained (possibly automatically) within the solar system to provide continuity for successive expeditions. Because of weathering and the possibility of detection and interference by the inhabitants of the Earth, it would be preferable not to erect such a base on the Earth’s surface. The Moon seems one reasonable alternative. Forthcoming high resolution photographic reconnaissance of the Moon from space vehicles – particularly of the back side – might bear these possibilities in mind. – Carl Sagan Controversy has…

China Lunar Spacecraft in Position for Humanity’s 1st-Ever Dark Side Landing

Orbiting the moon, China’s Chang’e 4 lunar lander has moved into position in preparation for mankind’s first landing on the far side of Earth’s only natural satellite. In entering its planned orbit on Sunday, the Chinese spacecraft will “prepare for the first-ever soft landing on the far side of the moon,” stated the China National Space Administration, cited by the state-owned Xinhua media outlet. Beijing did not immediately make available details on when the landing will occur, according to the South China Morning Post (SCMP). Locked in a tidal embrace with the same lunar face always aimed at the Earth,…

Our universe may be sitting on a bubble within an extra dimension…A new model with dark energy and our Universe riding on an expanding bubble in an extra dimension.

We know that our universe is expanding at an accelerating rate, but what causes this growth remains a mystery. The most likely explanation is that a strange force dubbed ‘dark energy’ is driving it. Understanding the nature of this dark energy is one of the difficult tasks in fundamental physics. It has for quite some time been trusted that string theory will give the appropriate response. As per string theory, all matter comprises of tiny, vibrating “stringlike” entities. The theory likewise requires there to be more spatial measurements than the three that are as of now part of ordinary information.…

Astronomers spot baby star emitting a flare 10,000 times larger than any created by the sun, in fiery ‘tantrum’ that could reveal clues on how exoplanets form

Astronomers have spotted a monstrous stellar flare coming from a baby star 685 light-years away that’s estimated to be 10,000 times larger than any such event emitted by our sun. Experts say the stellar ‘tantrum’ could provide a window into the birth of potentially habitable exoplanets, revealing how huge events shake up the material orbiting distant stars. The M-type star is just 2 million years old, meaning it has yet to reach the size at which it will remain for most of its life. Astronomers have spotted a monstrous stellar flare coming from a baby star 685 light-years away that’s…

Mysterious Lights in the California Sky and a Secretive Spy Satellite Launch

The anomalous sights and sounds in Americas skies continue this week as a strange light appeared in the air over California, prompting the Air Force to cancel a rocket launch and thoroughly freaking out Californians. According to local news reports, the light appeared at around 5:30 p.m. local time and persisted for several seconds. Dozens of motorists and residents caught the strange streak on camera, blowing up social media with posts of the curious apparition. NORAD immediately announced they were investigating the event, while the National Weather Service released a statement proposing that the light was a unique atmospheric phenomenon…

Astronomers Find Planet Covered in Gemstones

Once they’re far enough away from Earth, space probes often turn around and take a photo of out planet to show off its blue sapphire-like sparkle. Those of is living here know it’s nice but not a gem. However, it turns out other planets really are. Astronomers have recently discovered exoplanets formed in high temperatures that caused them to be covered with sapphires, rubies and other gemstones. Does this abundance of precious stones let guys living on these planets off the hook in Valentine’s Day? “Perhaps it shimmers red to blue like rubies and sapphires, because these gemstones are aluminium…

Mars: Pictures reveal ‘winter wonderland’ on the red planet

Earth’s North Pole is famous for its snowy climes – and for hosting Santa’s workshop, of course. But as these pictures reveal, it’s not the only planet with snow scenes this holiday season. This is the Korolev crater, near the north pole of Mars, as captured by the European Space Agency (ESA)’s Mars Express mission. The crater is 82km (50 miles) across, and filled with ice 1.8km thick. It was named after rocket engineer and spacecraft designer Sergei Korolev, the architect of the Soviet Union’s space programme. Mr Korolev worked on the first interplanetary missions to the Moon, Mars and…

Saturn is Losing its Rings … Fast!

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when someone says Neptune? Mercury? Pluto? Nothing exciting. Saturn? RINGS! Everyone knows about the rings. It’s the first planet anyone who gets a telescope for Christmas looks for. It’s the planet that’s hardest to make for a school project, but no one complains because those rings are so darned cool! Bad news, ring fans. NASA just announced that the planet is suffering from something called “ring rain” which is causing the rings to disappear and Saturn will soon be just another Uranus without the funny name jokes. “We estimate that this ‘ring…

Nasa scientists plan to send a nuclear robot drill to hunt for aliens on Jupiter’s moon

Scientists including researchers at Nasa have proposed a plan for a nuclear-powered robot drill that would dig into a moon in an attempt to find aliens. The plan, nicknamed “tunnelbot”, would offer an opportunity to delve deep beneath the distant world of Jupiter’s moon Europa and check whether there are aliens hiding beneath its surface, as some researchers suspect. The water hidden beneath Europa is considered one of the most promising places to find alien life in our own solar system. But it is stuck beneath a crust of ice, making it difficult to explore directly. Now scientists have suggested…

Astronomers discover a star so massive that its forming a tiny star around it rather than planets

The universe is full of surprises, and a colossal young star has been hiding a stellar one. While observing infant star MM 1a, astronomers found that its massive disk was actually forming another star instead of planets. The much smaller companion, dubbed MM 1b, was detected just outside the behemoth star’s dusty disk, and could actually house a planet-forming disk of its own. The discovery of the new star, published on December 14 in the Astrophysical Journal Letters, marks one of the first times astronomers saw a star forming in the fragmented disk of another. Stellar Siblings Binary stars are pretty common…

Astronomers discover the most distant body ever observed in the solar system, more than twice as far as Pluto

An ambitious team of astronomers has discovered the most “far out” object ever observed in our Solar System. The object, a pink dwarf planet called 2018 VG18 and nicknamed “Farout,” lies more than 100 times further from the sun than the Earth is. This discovery, made by Carnegie’s Scott S. Sheppard, the University of Hawaii’s David Tholen and Northern Arizona University’s Chad Trujillo, was formally announced today (Dec. 17) by the International Astronomical Union’s Minor Planet Center. Farout is about 120 AU away — 1 AU is the distance between the Earth and the Sun — making it the first…

All Methane Has Mysteriously Disappeared From Mars

Our relationship with methane is complicated. As natural gas, it’s an efficient fuel that that produces less carbon dioxide than other hydrocarbons. As cow farts, it’s a greenhouse gas often blamed for contributing to climate change. As an abundant substance trapped in permafrost, it gets explosively released when said climate change melts the permafrost in Siberia, creating massive holes. And, as a product of microbial methanogenesis, it’s an important sign that a planet may contain life, or at least have the ingredients to support it. The discovery of methane on Mars in 2004 got the scientific and let’s-move-to-Mars worlds excited.…

US Air Force set to launch 1st next-generation GPS satellite

After months of delays, the U.S. Air Force is about to launch the first of a new generation of GPS satellites, designed to be more accurate, secure and versatile. But some of their most highly touted features will not be fully available until 2022 or later because of problems in a companion program to develop a new ground control system for the satellites, government auditors said. The satellite is scheduled to lift off Tuesday from Cape Canaveral, Florida, aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. It’s the first of 32 planned GPS III satellites that will replace older ones now in…

10 wonders of the solar system

Our solar system is big. Way big. In fact, if Earth were the size of a marble, the solar system out to Neptune would cover an area the size of San Francisco. Within this vastness lies an array of celestial wonders: the sun with its surface of plasma, the Earth with its abundance of life and massive oceans, the mesmerizing clouds of Jupiter, to name a few. For this particular list, we’ve decided to highlight some well-known celestial wonders, as well as a few you might not know about. With new discoveries happening all the time, and so much left…

Is a space war brewing? Russia announces it will establish a lunar colony by 2040 just hours after NASA says it’s returning to the moon ‘to stay’

Russia will establish a moon colony by 2040, the federal space agency announced. According to officials, getting a human-crewed landing to set up a lunar base is the top priority. The news comes just after NASA revealed it plans to take America back to the moon ‘to stay’ using private firms to run the business. Rosmocos, the Russian space agency, said it will launch the strategy in three phases. This will include launching an orbital station, then a manned mission and subsequently the construction of a permanent base. A spokesperson said the agency had pinpointed ‘unique regions with favourable conditions…

U.K. govt. agency warning that coming massive space storms will wipe out modern society by killing all electronics

The Met Office in the United Kingdom is warning that massive solar storms that occur on an average of about once every 100 years are coming and that, without adequate warning, they could wipe out most technology on earth, hurling much of the world back to the 18th century. The country’s national weather service says Britain could be “crippled by huge electrical disturbances caused by storms in space unless a satellite network is built that can detect them coming,” The Sunday Times reported last week. Naturally, the U.K. would not be the only country affected. Such massive solar storms would…

Asteroid as Powerful as 50 Megaton Nuke May Slam Into Earth in 2023 – NASA

A large asteroid that could someday be headed directly for Earth would pack a tremendous impact force 1,500 times that of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombs combined, the newspaper Express warned. The British daily cites NASA sources as claiming that the space rock, measuring nearly 700 feet across, could have a staggering 62 different potential impact trajectories with Earth with each of them potentially able to set the asteroid on a collision course with us over the next 100 years. According to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), asteroid 2018 LF16 was last spotted on 16 June with calculations showing that the space boulder could smash into our planet sometime before 2117. The…

Russian Space Agency Chief Wants to ‘Check’ If Americans Walked on the Moon

While it is widely believed that the 1969 Apollo 11 mission did successfully deliver the first people to the Moon, many still claim that the famous moon landing was faked. The Apollo program marked perhaps the biggest triumph for the US in the Space Race with the USSR. Dmitry Rogozin, the head of Russian national space agency Roscosmos, has offered to “check” whether the American moon landing program was not a hoax. Speaking with Moldovan President Igor Dodon about the prospects of a moon base, Rogozin suggested that no country can bear the burden of a costly moon program alone. When asked if American astronauts…

Three HUGE asteroids will fly dangerously close to Earth this weekend, NASA warns

This weekend, three enormous asteroids will make a ‘close approach’ to Earth, NASA has warned. The asteroids – the biggest of which is predicted to measure up to 30 metres across – will whizz past our planet on November 10. At around 14:03 GMT, an asteroid dubbed 2018 VS1 will pass the Earth. This asteroid is predicted to measure between 13-28 metres across – suggesting the asteroid could be five times as tall as a giraffe! Thankfully, NASA’s trajectory estimates indicate that 2018 VS1 will be around 861,700 miles away from Earth during its closest approach. Just 16 minutes after…

New Forms of ‘Dark Life’ Discovered in Strange Environments

The search for dark matter has been a quest of physicists for decades. While some evidence suggests that the universe could be made up of up to 85% of this invisible and undetectable form of matter, scientists have yet to conclusively identify it in the wild; most of the evidence is gleaned from the unexplained gravitational effects that something is exerting on the matter we can see. Does dark matter actually exist, or is the theory a modern-day four humours? Time will tell. In the meantime, scientists in a different discipline are uncovering evidence that other types of dark matter…

Scientists Confirm Earth Has Two “Hidden Moons”

It’s official: Earth has more than just one moon out there in its orbit. Well, sort of. National Geographic reports that a pair of particulate clouds–“dustballs,” in essence–have been located in Earth’s orbit at a distance roughly equal to that of the moon itself. The unusual formations were suspected to have existed for decades already, although this was only recently confirmed by a team of Hungarian astronomers and physicists with Eötvös Loránd University. Located around 250,000 miles from Earth, these outer space dustballs, known as “Kordylewski clouds,” are roughly the same distance from Earth as the moon, although they are much wider–as…

New antimatter gravity experiments begin at CERN

We learn it at high school: release two objects of different mass in the absence of friction forces and they fall down at the same rate in Earth’s gravity. What we haven’t learned, because it hasn’t been directly measured in experiments, is whether antimatter falls down at the same rate as ordinary matter or if it might behave differently. Two new experiments at CERN, ALPHA-g and GBAR, have now started their journey towards answering this question. ALPHA-g is very similar to the ALPHA experiment, which makes neutral antihydrogen atoms by taking antiprotons from the Antiproton Decelerator (AD) and binding them with positrons from a sodium-22…

20KM High & 200KM Thick: The Most Perplexing ‘Mountain Range’ In Our Solar System

Our solar system is fascinating, to say the least, and there is still so much we don’t know about it. What makes one even more curious is knowing the organizations and people who operate at the highest levels of ‘security clearances’ probably know a whole lot more. That being said, if you’re independently curious, there are more than enough resources available to satisfy your curiosity, you will find a way to investigate. At the very least you could get access to the best telescope you have and stare at the other planets, our Moon, and the Moons of other planets.…

Mysterious interstellar asteroid could be a solar sail from wrecked alien probe, astronomers say

Interstellar mystery rock Oumuamua might have been part of an alien reconnaissance mission, according to two Harvard Smithsonian astronomers who saw in the strange object signs it could be a light-driven probe. As the strange rock moved out of our solar system last September, it sped up instead of slowing down as would be expected. Observers dismissed the acceleration as the result of a release of gas from within the rock, but astronomers Shmuel Bialy and Abraham Loeb are rethinking the whole matter, reasoning that if Oumuamua had merely been a comet undergoing outgassing, the release would have set the…