Following a successful launch at 10:44 p.m. EDT Thursday, NASA's four Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) spacecraft are positioned in Earth's orbit to begin the first space mission dedicated to the study of a phenomenon called magnetic reconnection. This process is thought to be the catalyst for some of the most powerful explosions in our solar system.
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has the best evidence yet for an underground saltwater ocean on Ganymede, Jupiter's largest moon. The subterranean ocean is thought to have more water than all the water on Earth's surface.
A MIT spinout has developed a commercial electrospray propulsion system - their first is about the size of a pack of gum - made of tiny chips that provide thrust for small satellites. Among other advantages, this module can be manufactured for significantly less than today's alternatives.
The unbound star, named US708, is travelling at 1,200 kilometres per second - the fastest speed ever recorded for such an object in our galaxy - meaning it is not held back by gravity and will eventually leave the Milky Way.
A team of astronomers have identified nine new dwarf satellites orbiting the Milky Way, the largest number ever discovered at once. The findings, from newly-released imaging data taken from the Dark Energy Survey, may help unravel the mysteries behind dark matter, the invisible substance holding galaxies together.
A team of astronomers discovered an unusual phenomenon in the centre of the Milky Way: They detected about 20 rotating dust and gas discs in each cluster hosting exceptionally large and hot stars. The existence of these discs in the presence of the destructive UV radiation field of their massive neighbours came as a surprise.
A new survey of one of the most active, star-forming regions in the galactic neighborhood is helping astronomers better understand the processes that may have contributed to the formation of the sun 4.5 billion years ago.
Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope have spotted for the first time a distant supernova split into four images. The multiple images of the exploding star are caused by the powerful gravity of a foreground elliptical galaxy embedded in a massive cluster of galaxies. This unique observation will help astronomers refine their estimates of the mass of dark matter in the lensing galaxy and cluster.
Martian colonists could use an innovative new technique to harvest energy from carbon dioxide thanks to research that proposes a new kind of engine for producing energy based on the Leidenfrost effect - a phenomenon which happens when a liquid comes into near contact with a surface much hotter than its boiling point.