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Magnetic turbulence trumps collisions to heat solar wind

New research led by University of Warwick physicist Dr Kareem Osman has provided significant insight into how the solar wind heats up when it should not. The solar wind rushes outwards from the raging inferno that is our Sun, but from then on the wind should only get cooler as it expands beyond our solar system since there are no particle collisions to dissipate energy.

Aug 17th, 2012

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NASA is tracking electron beams from the Sun

In the quest to understand how the world's weather moves around the globe, scientists have had to tease apart different kinds of atmospheric movement, such as the great jet streams that can move across a whole hemisphere versus more intricate, localized flows. Much the same must currently be done to understand the various motions at work in the great space weather system that links the sun and Earth as the sun shoots material out in all directions, creating its own version of a particle sea to fill up the solar system.

Aug 16th, 2012

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Hubble watches star clusters on a collision course

Astronomers using data from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have caught two clusters full of massive stars that may be in the early stages of merging. The clusters are 170,000 light-years away in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a small satellite galaxy to our Milky Way.

Aug 16th, 2012

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NASA goes green: NASA selects green propellant technology demonstration mission

NASA has selected a team led by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corporation of Boulder, Colo., for a technology demonstration of a high performance "green" propellant alternative to the highly toxic fuel hydrazine. With this award, NASA opens a new era of innovative and non-toxic green fuels that are less harmful to our environment, have fewer operational hazards, and decrease the complexity and cost of launch processing.

Aug 16th, 2012

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Phoenix cluster sets record pace at forming stars

Astronomers have found an extraordinary galaxy cluster, one of the largest objects in the universe, that is breaking several important cosmic records. Observations of the Phoenix cluster with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, the National Science Foundation's South Pole Telescope, and eight other world-class observatories may force astronomers to rethink how these colossal structures and the galaxies that inhabit them evolve.

Aug 15th, 2012

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Recreating a slice of the universe

Scientists at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) and their colleagues at the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS) have invented a new computational approach that can accurately follow the birth and evolution of thousands of galaxies over billions of years. For the first time it is now possible to build a universe from scratch that brims with galaxies like we observe around us.

Aug 15th, 2012

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Keeping up with Curiosity

When Curiosity touched down safely on Mars on August 5, John Grotzinger, the mission's chief scientist and the Fletcher Jones Professor of Geology at Caltech, was given the 'keys' to the car-sized rover.

Aug 10th, 2012

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