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Rosetta on Final Approach to Comet Landing

Posted: August 7th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Applied Science, Astrophysical, Favorite New Thought, From The Web | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Rosetta on Final Approach to Comet Landing

In the most complex space mission since the moon landing, an attempt to land a spacecraft on a comet. Launched by the European Space Agency, Rosetta has become the first ever spacecraft to catch up with a comet, a landmark stage in a decade-long space mission that scientists hope will help unlock some of the secrets of the solar system.

The Rosetta spacecraft has travelled six billion kilometres using the gravitational forces of Earth and Mars to slingshot towards the five-kilometre-wide comet. The craft is now within 100 kilometres and considered to be on its final approach :: Read the full article »»»»


Jade Rabbit, China’s Lunar Rover, Declared Dead

Posted: February 13th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Science News, Solar Stars, SPACE | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Jade Rabbit, China’s Lunar Rover, Declared Dead

Jade Rabbit, China's Lunar Rover, Declared DeadChina’s troubled Jade Rabbit lunar rover has died on the surface of the moon, in a major setback for Beijing’s ambitious space program.

The country’s first moon rover “could not be restored to full function”, the state-owned China News Service said in a brief report, after the landmark mission ran into mechanical problems last month.

The Jade Rabbit, or Yutu in Chinese, was deployed on the moon’s surface on December 15 and was a huge source of pride in China – only the third country to complete a lunar rover mission after the United States and the former Soviet Union.

The landing was a key step forward in Beijing’s ambitious military-run space program, which include plans for a permanent orbiting station by 2020 and eventually sending a human to the moon.

The rover experienced a “mechanical control abnormality” in late January due to “the complicated lunar surface environment”, according to the official Xinhua news agency, and was unable to function since then :: Read the full article »»»»


Tow Me To The Moon

Posted: April 9th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: NASA, National Aeronautics Space Administration, SPACE | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Tow Me To The Moon

Tow Me To the MoonThat last bastion of US ingenuity, NASA will apparently launch a new space mission that intends to grab a small asteroid and tow it into orbit around the moon, as part of a long-range plan towards establishing permanent manned outposts in space.

US Senator Bill Nelson says to get the project off the ground, president Barack Obama will propose around $US100 million for the space agency in his 2014 budget, which he submits to Congress this week.

The proposed plan calls for a robotic-spacecraft to capture an asteroid and tow it back towards Earth, ultimately leaving it in a stable orbit around the moon.

Once there there could be mining activities, research into ways of deflecting an asteroid from striking Earth, and testing to develop technology for a trip to deep space and Mars, Senator Nelson said in his statement :: Read the full article »»»»


NASA: OSIRIS-REx

Posted: December 14th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: NASA, National Aeronautics Space Administration, SPACE | Tags: , , , , , , , | Comments Off on NASA: OSIRIS-REx

NASA Stardust Rendering

In 2016 NASA will launch its Origins-Spectral Interpretation-Resource Identification-Security-Regolith Explorer, or OSIRIS-REx, on a mission to collect samples from an asteroid using a robotic arm.

NASA is developing a high-tech harpoon that could one day pierce a comet and grab samples for scientists on Earth to study for hints about how the universe formed. The idea borrows on a concept developed by the European Space Agency but adds a sample chamber to the spear so it can capture dust from a fast-moving, ice-spewing comet by hovering near it and launching the space harpoon.

Read the full article »»»»