Recent News from the Commercial Space Gateway

(Space Fellowship) Cluster and Starforming Region Westerlund 2

Located 20,000 light-years away in the constellation Carina, the young cluster and starforming region Westerlund 2 fills this cosmic scene. Captured with Hubble's cameras in near-infrared and visible light, the stunning image is a celebration of the 25th anniversary of the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope on April 24, 1990. The cluster's dense concentration of luminous, massive stars is about 10 light-years across. Strong winds and radiation from those massive young stars have sculpted an [...]

(Space Fellowship) Station Crew Prepares for Cargo Ship Undocking

The crew of the International Space Station took a break from research Friday, enjoying some off-duty time as it prepared for the departure of one cargo ship and the arrival of another in short order. NASA Television will provide live coverage of the Progress 57 spacecraft undocking beginning at 2:15 a.m. EDT Saturday, April 25. Undocking from the Pirs Docking Compartment is scheduled for 2:40 a.m. The unpiloted Progress 57 Russian cargo ship delivered more than two tons of food, fuel and  [...]

(ScienceDaily) Examining Einstein: Precise experiments using lasers and clocks in space

Albert Einstein tells us that clocks run slower the deeper they are in the gravitational potential well of a mass – the closer they are to a heavenly body, for example. This effect is described by General Relativity Theory as the gravitational red shift – it is detectable in spectral lines that shift toward the red end of the spectrum. General Relativity Theory also predicts that the rates of all clocks are equally influenced by gravitation independent of how these clocks are physically or technically constructed. However, more recent theories of gravitation allow for the possibility that the type of clock indeed influences the degree of gravitational red shift. To test this theory-about-a-theory, scientists have launched a high-altitude research rocket to send various types of clocks into space and back again.   

(Discovery News) Hubble at 25: Brief History of the Hubble Space Telescope

It's been an eventful 25 years for what turned out to become the world's best-known telescope and perhaps among the most productive science instruments ever made. Here's a look at Hubble's life in pictures.   

(Discovery News) 'Spider' Patterns on Pluto Await Spacecraft

Strange and violent events maybe taking place on Pluto -- just in time for the New Horizons spacecraft to take a closer look.   

(ScienceDaily) To flare or not to flare: The riddle of galactic thin to thick disk solved

A long-standing puzzle regarding the nature of disk galaxies has finally been solved by a team of astronomers using state-of-the-art theoretical models. The new study shows that groups of stars with the same age always flare as the result of massive galactic collisions. When taken all together, these flares, nested like the petals of a blooming rose, puff up the disk and constitute what astronomers call the “thick” disk.   

(ScienceDaily) Giant cosmic tsunami wakes up comatose galaxies

Galaxies are often found in clusters, which contain many 'red and dead' members that stopped forming stars in the distant past. Now an international team of astronomers have discovered that these comatose galaxies can sometimes come back to life. If clusters of galaxies merge, a huge shock wave can drive the birth of a new generation of stars -- the sleeping galaxies get a new lease of life.   

(euronews) The walking robot set to help elderly people live an autonomous life

How can we help elderly people find their way around places which are new and completely unknown to them? At the Science Museum in Trento, northern…


(euronews) Do you know: what's a robotic walker?

Don´t get confused; we are not talking about an ordinary walking robot. Just listen to what this Italian computer engineer has to say about a…


(euronews) A satellite revolution in oceanography

Plymouth is one of England's historic port cities, a place from which sailors, soldiers and scientists have set off to sea for centuries. Today…

(euronews) The Astronaut Academy: "We focus on leg muscles and back muscles"

The human body didn't evolve for spaceflight, so astronauts have to train hard to get ready for the unique experience of living in microgravity. At…

(Space Fellowship) Blue Tears and the Milky Way

Lapping at rocks along the shore of the Island of Nangan, Taiwan, planet Earth, waves are infused with a subtle blue light in this sea and night skyscape. Composed of a series of long exposures made on April 16 the image captures the faint glow from Noctiluca scintillans. Also known as sea sparkles or blue tears, the marine plankton's bioluminescence is stimulated by wave motion. City lights along the coast of mainland China shine beneath low clouds in the west but stars and the faint Milky  [...]

(ScienceDaily) James Webb Space Telescope: Building Hubble's successor

Inside NASA's giant thermal vacuum chamber, called Chamber A, at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, the James Webb Space Telescope's Pathfinder backplane test model, is being prepared for its cryogenic test. Previously used for manned spaceflight missions, this historic chamber is now filled with engineers and technicians preparing for a crucial test.   

(Discovery News) Tiny and Speedy: 'Homeless' Galaxies Ejected From Clusters

Astronomers have discovered 11 entire galaxies that have undergone some unpleasant gravitational turbulence and flung from their home clusters, marooned in intercluster space.   

(ScienceDaily) Astronomers find runaway galaxies

We know of about two dozen runaway stars, and have even found one runaway star cluster escaping its galaxy forever. Now, astronomers have spotted 11 runaway galaxies that have been flung out of their homes to wander the void of intergalactic space.   

(Space Fellowship) Astronomers Find Runaway Galaxies

Cambridge, MA - We know of about two dozen runaway stars, and have even found one runaway star cluster escaping its galaxy forever. Now, astronomers have spotted 11 runaway galaxies that have been flung out of their homes to wander the void of intergalactic space. "These galaxies are facing a lonely future, exiled from the galaxy clusters they used to live in," said astronomer Igor Chilingarian (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics/Moscow State University). Chilingarian is the lead aut [...]

(Space Fellowship) Aerojet Selected to Start Negotiations for Contract to Design and Develop Advanced Propulsion System

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Aerojet Rocketdyne, a GenCorp (NYSE: GY) company, has been selected by the NASA Advanced Exploration Systems Division to start negotiations for a contract to design and demonstrate an advanced propulsion system that would enable human spaceflight to cislunar space and beyond to Mars. Under the first phase of the contract, Aerojet Rocketdyne would complete the development of a 100‑kilowatt Hall Thruster System, including its patented 250kW multi-channel Nested Hall Thr [...]

(Discovery News) Virtual Telescope Readies to Image Black Hole's 'Ring of Fire'

The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) now spans the diameter of our planet and, when the vast project goes online, astronomers will get their first glimpse of the bright ring surrounding a supermassive black hole.   

(ScienceDaily) Can sound help us detect 'earthquakes' on Venus?

Detecting an 'earthquake' on Venus would seem to be an impossible task. But conditions in Venus' atmosphere are much more hospitable, and it is here that researchers hope to deploy an array of balloons or satellites that could detect Venusian seismic activity -- using sound.   

(Discovery News) Hubble at 25: Space Telescope's Top Science Discoveries

Hubble’s scientific bounty has benefited a wide range of astronomical and astrophysical fields, including the study of planets, moons and small icy bodies in the outer solar system and the cosmological history of the universe. Here’s a look at a few of Hubble’s greatest hits.   

(ScienceDaily) Celestial fireworks celebrate Hubble's 25th anniversary

The glittering tapestry of young stars flaring to life in this new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image aptly resembles an exploding shell in a fireworks display. This vibrant image of the star cluster Westerlund 2 has been released to celebrate Hubble's 25th year in orbit and a quarter of a century of new discoveries, stunning images and outstanding science.   

(Discovery News) Stunning Hubble Silver Anniversary Picture Unveiled

Hubble anniversary tributes kicked off on Thursday with the unveiling a spectacular new image taken by the telescope.   

(euronews) Scientists' breakthrough with artificial spider silk

Spider silk is one of the strongest materials known to man. A strand just 3 cm thick would be able to stop a speeding train. But despite huge…


(Space Fellowship) Meteor in the Milky Way

Earth's April showers include the Lyrid Meteor Shower, observed for more than 2,000 years when the planet makes its annual passage through the dust stream of long-period Comet Thatcher. A grain of that comet's dust, moving 48 kilometers per second at an altitude of 100 kilometers or so, is swept up in this night sky view from the early hours of April 21. Flashing toward the southeastern horizon, the meteor's brilliant streak crosses the central region of the rising Milky Way. Its trail point [...]

(ScienceDaily) Space scientists pay homage to 25 years of the Hubble Space Telescope

It was launched 25 years ago and has given humankind a glimpse at some of the farthest and earliest cosmic phenomenon in the observable Universe. On Friday, 24 April, the HST will celebrate exactly 25 years since it was launched.   

(Commercial Space Watch) Rep. Rogers Hates Everything Russian - Except Russian Rocket Engines

Just when you thought that Congress was cutting ties to Russia some members of Congress are trying to sneak some rocket engine business past unsuspecting eyes.


(Discovery News) Cosmic Earth Day: Watch the Lyrid Meteors Peak Tonight

Today is Earth Day, so what better way to celebrate our beautiful planet and its place in the cosmos by watching some natural fireworks tonight.   

(Space Fellowship) Experiment Work Inside and Outside Station Wednesday

The Expedition 43 lab assistants conducted biomedical science in the International Space Station on Wednesday. Meanwhile, controllers on the ground will remotely maneuver the Canadarm2 outside the station to experiment with the possibility of servicing satellites on orbit for longer missions. The crew participated in a wide variety of life science studies. The Myco experiment, which analyzes nose, throat and skin samples, examines how microorganisms on the space station can affect a crew memb [...]

(Space Fellowship) Mars Orbiter Views Curiosity Rover in 'Artist's Drive'

A view from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter on April 8, 2015, catches sight of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover passing through a valley called "Artist's Drive" on the lower slope of Mount Sharp. The image from the orbiter's High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera shows the rover's position after a drive of about 75 feet (23 meters) during the 949th Martian day, or sol, of the rover's work on Mars. The location of the rover, with its shadow extending toward the right, i [...]

(Discovery News) Happy Birthday Hubble! It's Time to Party: Event Guide

The Hubble Space Telescope, among the most celebrated and popular machines ever made, starts its 25th year in orbit on Thursday, the anniversary of its launch aboard NASA’s now-retired space shuttle Discovery.