Astronomers spot planet most like Earth

Apr 18, 2014

Astronomers spot planet most like Earth

Astronomers have discovered what they say is the planet most like Earth yet detected — a distant, rocky world that is similar in size to ours and exists in the Goldilocks zone, where it is not too hot and not too cold for life. ...

Mars never sustained warm , wet conditions: study

Apr 14, 2014

Mars never sustained warm , wet conditions: study

Cold and dry today, Mars was previously warm and wet, but possibly only at intervals, a study published Sunday suggests. Scientists have long puzzled over what happened to the water, the precious stuff of life, on the red planet. Unmanned spacecraft have sent home ...

Twin rings found around asteroid

Mar 30, 2014

Twin rings found around asteroid

Astonished astronomers have found rings around an asteroid, the smallest object known to have this feature and only the fifth after Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. The twin rings around a rock called Chariklo were spotted in last June as it passed in front ...

Mar 28, 2014

Distant hunter of comets to awaken

A fridge-size robot lab hurtling through the solar system aboard a European probe is about to wake from hibernation and prepare for the first landing by a spacecraft on a comet. The delicate operation, starting Friday, marks the next phase in the European Space ...

Mar 21, 2014

Massive solar blasts missed Earth by days

Fierce solar blasts that could have badly damaged electrical grids and disabled satellites in space narrowly missed Earth in 2012, U.S. researchers said. The bursts would have wreaked havoc on the Earth’s magnetic field, matching the severity of the 1859 Carrington Event, the largest ...

Tiniest planet Mercury is getting even smaller

Mar 17, 2014

Tiniest planet Mercury is getting even smaller

Detailed maps of Mercury’s cliffs and ditches show the solar system’s innermost and smallest planet, Mercury, has lost much more real estate due to cooling over 4 billion years than scientists thought, according to a report published Sunday. Cooling of Mercury’s massive iron core ...

Mar 9, 2014

Main Mars meteorite type traced to crater

About 5 million years ago, an asteroid or comet slammed into Mars so hard that rocks and other debris launched into space. Some eventually landed on Earth, becoming the “shergottites,” the biggest of three main types of meteorites from Mars. Now researchers say they ...

Mar 7, 2014

Sicilians send photo-snapping pastry into stratosphere

Sicilian amateur scientists have launched a model cannolo, a cream-stuffed pastry roll symbolic of the Italian island, into the stratosphere, capturing bizarre images of the dessert flying far above Earth last month. The “Sicilian Space Program,” which cost roughly €350, had symbolic importance as ...

Breakup of asteroid witnessed for first time

Mar 7, 2014

Breakup of asteroid witnessed for first time

Scientists have observed for the first time an asteroid breaking apart, crumbling into at least 10 pieces in a kind of slow-motion celestial train wreck. The rocky asteroid, named P/2013 R3, was one of the innumerable objects populating the crowded asteroid belt between the ...