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Adam Makarenko wants to change the way we look at space – so he creates miniature exoplanets in his living room in Toronto, Canada. Makarenko, 43, has been creating models since 2006 and began building exoplanets in 2016.


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A newly discovered exoplanet is causing excitement among astronomers as it has the potential to give us the best opportunity ever to find alien life. The 'super-Earth', which is around 1.4 times the size of Earth but seven times its mass, is rocky, temperate and orbits a quiet star in our galactic neighbourhood.


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The first sighting of a halo of hydrogen wafting around the Milky Way has been revealed today. It was thought our galaxy had this kind of halo of diffuse gas, based on what we knew about other galaxies, but it had never been directly observed until now. Spiral galaxies like the Milky Way are made up of a central bulge surrounded by a disk and spiral arms, but these only make up a tiny part of its mass. It is thought the bulk of the ‘missing mass’ is made up of dark matter, which does not interact with light so cannot be seen.


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Two veteran NASA missions are providing new details about icy, ocean-bearing moons of Jupiter and Saturn, further heightening the scientific interest of these and other "ocean worlds" in our solar system and beyond. The findings are presented in papers published Thursday by researchers with NASA’s Cassini mission to Saturn and Hubble Space Telescope.


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Later today, Nasa will be making an announcement about the presence of oceans in our Solar System. While little detail has been given, Nasa has said the mysterious news comes from data gathered by the Cassini spacecraft and the Hubble space telescope. The full announcement will be made at 19:00 BST (14:00 EDT).


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Most scientific papers on the discovery of new galaxies are notable because they find something out of the ordinary. Now, a new galaxy has been discovered which is special because it is so average.


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About four billion years ago, Mars was warm. Water flowed in lakes and rivers under a nice thick blanket of atmosphere. But then something cataclysmic happened. Mars' insulating atmosphere all but disappeared. Exposed to the harsh elements of space, the red planet became the dry, frozen wasteland that it is today. Until now, this missing atmosphere had baffled scientists; was it lost in space, or did the Martian crust reabsorb it? New data from NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) mission is settling the debate. Bruce Jakowski and others on the MAVEN team have calculated that most of Mars' atmosphere blew away in the solar winds.


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The particles making up dark matter could be identified through gravitational waves, according to a recent study. The research, led by Asimina Arvanitaki at the Perimeter Institute and colleagues from Stanford and NYU, says the question about what the Universe is made of could be answered by using the Ligo detectors. These instruments were made famous last year when they saw gravitational waves for the first time, created by the merger of two black holes.


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Traditionally, rockets are one-use only - all the elements of the vehicle are discarded in getting a satellite payload into orbit. But SpaceX has become adept at landing its boosters safely back on Earth after a mission. Now, the firm is ready to put one of these "flight proven" vehicles on the launch pad again.


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The ExoMars mobile rover, tasked with recovering evidence of life on the Red Planet, will touch down in 2021 at one of two sites, scientists announced Wednesday. "After intense discussions, we have voted for the sites Oxia Planum and Mawrth Vallis," Frances Westhall, head of research at the Center for Molecular Biophysics in Orleans, France, told journalists.


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NASA’S HIGHLY EXPERIMENTAL Earth Observing-1 satellite mission was supposed to last just a year. It did that, and then survived 16 more—all the while testing NASA’s riskiest, oddball ideas. It’s been a proving ground for everything from multi- and hyperspectral imagers, to a self-piloting AI. But EO-1 is finally out of fuel, and at the end of the month the craft’s operating team will close up shop.


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More than ten years ago, astronomers made a discovery that has puzzled them ever since – supermassive black holes appeared to have popped up soon after the start of the Universe. It is thought to take billions of years for supermassive black holes to form, but at least 20 of them were spotted at the dawn of the Universe, just 800 million years after the Big Bang. A team of researchers from Dublin City University, Columbia University, Georgia Tech, and the University of Helsinki, have now used computer simulations to attempt to solve the mystery. The results, published today, say a black hole can grow quickly if the galaxy it is in stops forming stars.


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Few things have so forcefully driven home the wonder, and fragility, of life as that iconic image of Earth set against the vast expanse of space. And so of course it appears among the 225 photos in Apollo VII – XVII, the stunning photo book Dutch designer Simon Phillipson wrote with designers Floris Heyne, Joel Meter and Delano Steenmeijer.


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These raw, unprocessed images of Saturn's tiny moon, Pan, were taken on March 7, 2017, by NASA's Cassini spacecraft. The flyby had a close-approach distance of 24,572 kilometers (15,268 miles). These images are the closest images ever taken of Pan and will help to characterize its shape and geology.


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Astronomers have peered back more than 13 billion light years to find a huge mass of glowing stars – the most distant galaxy ever found to contain cosmic dust. The discovery gives us a completely new look at when the very first stars were 'born' and could reveal more about how the Universe expanded.


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Speaking at the Planetary Science Vision 2050 Workshop conference in Washington, director of Nasa’s Planetary Science Division James Green said scientists from the space agency have proposed a plan to shield Mars from the Sun’s rays through an artificial magnetic field around the planet. Without a protective magnetic field, anyone living on the Red Planet would have to protect themselves from the harmful radiation from the Sun that we, on Earth, are shielded from. Green described the idea as involving a “magnetic shield” launched in a stable orbit between Mars and the Sun. It would be made of a large electric circuit powerful enough to generate an artificial magnetic field.


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ESA - European Space Agency share a great video of the annular solar eclipse took place over South America and Africa.


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A link between the amount of material that can be seen spewing out of a black hole, and the brightness of the black hole itself has been identified for the first time. Michael Parker from Cambridge University was studying distant galaxies to learn about a poorly understood phenomenon of black holes when he stumbled across this unique feature around the active galactic nuclei AGN IRAS 13224−3809.


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Anybody who longs to see an alien world up close got an exciting gift last year. In August, researchers reported the discovery of a potentially habitable, Earth-sized planet orbiting the Sun’s closest stellar neighbour — Proxima Centauri, a mere 1.3 parsecs, or 4.22 light years, away.


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At the heart of our galaxy, a vast black hole is devouring matter from the dust clouds that surround it. Little by little, expanses of interstellar material are being swallowed up by this voracious galactic carnivore that, in the process, has reached a mass that is 4m times that of our sun.


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NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration Spitzer Space Telescope has revealed the first known system of seven Earth-size planets around a single star. Three of these planets are firmly located in the habitable zone, the area around the parent star where a rocky planet is most likely to have liquid water. The discovery sets a new record for greatest number of habitable-zone planets found around a single star outside our solar system. All of these seven planets could have liquid water – key to life as we know it – under the right atmospheric conditions, but the chances are highest with the three in the habitable zone.


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SpaceX has launched the first private rocket from the same historic site that saw some of NASA's greatest space missions, then landed a booster nearby in a resounding success. The California-based company's Falcon 9 rocket launched a robotic Dragon cargo capsule toward the International Space Station today (Feb. 19) at 9:39 a.m. EST (1439 GMT) from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center — the same pad that once hosted Apollo moon missions and space shuttle launches.


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Churchill ponders the conditions that make for a habitable world, and on considering the vast number of stars perhaps circled by alien planets, comes to the conclusion that the answer to the essay’s title question, Are We Alone in the Universe?, was surely a resounding “no”.


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A new dataset released by the Carnegie Institution for Science and MIT includes around 61,000 measurements of 1,600 nearby stars. The information, which was collected by Hawaii’s W.M. Keck Observatory over the course of two decades, is being released in an effort to crowdsource the search for additional planets.




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