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The world’s largest airplane took flight for the first time ever on Saturday morning. Built by rocket launch company Stratolaunch, the 500,000-pound plane with a 385-foot wingspan lifted off shortly after 10AM ET from Mojave Air and Space Port in Mojave, California. It was a critical first test flight for the aircraft, designed to launch rockets into orbit from the air. The inaugural flight lasted for 150 minutes, according to the company, after which the plane safely landed.


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Astronomers have taken the first ever image of a black hole, which is located in a distant galaxy. It measures 40 billion km across - three million times the size of the Earth - and has been described by scientists as "a monster". The black hole is 500 million trillion km away and was photographed by a network of eight telescopes across the world. Details have been published today in Astrophysical Journal Letters.


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In the past three decades, almost 4,000 planet-like objects have been discovered orbiting isolated stars outside the solar system (exoplanets). Beginning in 2011, it was possible to use NASA's Kepler Space Telescope to observe the first exoplanets in orbit around young binary systems of two live stars with hydrogen still burning in their core.


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On March 29, NASA will have the first all-female spacewalk in the agency's history. Conducting the spacewalk will be astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch. On the ground, they will be supported by an all-female crew at Houston's Johnson Space Center.


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SpaceX's first Crew Dragon spacecraft cast off from the International Space Station for the return to Earth Friday (March 8th) as it wrapped up a historic test flight for NASA. The Crew Dragon undocked from the space station at 2:32 a.m. EST (0732 GMT) as both spacecraft sailed 253 miles (407 kilometers) above Africa near Sudan. Its departure ended five days linked at the station following an arrival on Sunday (March 3) during a high-profile Demo-1 demonstration mission. The spacecraft is scheduled to splash down in the Atlantic Ocean, near Florida's eastern coast, at 8:45 a.m. EST (1345 GMT).


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Just a day after launching to orbit, SpaceX’s new Crew Dragon capsule automatically docked to a port on the International Space Station this morning — a critical part of its current test flight. This docking maneuver is something the capsule will have to do routinely in the future, when it starts transporting astronauts to and from the ISS.


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The most detailed images of Ultima Thule -- obtained just minutes before the spacecraft's closest approach at 12:33 a.m. EST on Jan. 1 -- have a resolution of about 110 feet (33 meters) per pixel. Their combination of higher spatial resolution and a favorable viewing geometry offer an unprecedented opportunity to investigate the surface of Ultima Thule, believed to be the most primitive object ever encountered by a spacecraft.


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Late Tuesday night, scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory sent their final data uplink to the Opportunity rover on Mars. Over this connection, via the Deep Space Network, the American jazz singer Billie Holiday crooned "I'll Be Seeing You". But in the end, no response came. Opportunity would finally be declared dead on Sol 5352, as in five thousand, three hundred, and fifty-two days on Mars.


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Ultima Thule: Nasa images reveal ‘highly unusual’ shape of most distant object ever explored


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Millions of people around the world watched a total lunar eclipse on Monday. Some of those viewing streaming broadcasts online noticed a tiny, yellow-white flash on the lunar surface – a suspected meteorite impact.


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A new effort to restore contact with the Mars rover Opportunity addresses low-probability scenarios that could be keeping the rover from communicating with Earth.


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The appearance of a single green leaf hinted at a future in which astronauts would grow their own food in space, potentially setting up residence at outposts on the moon or other planets. Now, barely after it had sprouted, the cotton plant onboard China’s lunar rover has died. The plant relied on sunlight at the moon’s surface, but as night arrived at the lunar far side and temperatures plunged as low as -170C, its short life came to an end.


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Astronomers have revealed details of mysterious signals emanating from a distant galaxy, picked up by a telescope in Canada. The precise nature and origin of the blasts of radio waves is unknown. Among the 13 fast radio bursts, known as FRBs, was a very unusual repeating signal, coming from the same source about 1.5 billion light years away.


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Three new planets and six supernovae outside our solar system have been observed by Nasa’s planet-hunting Tess mission in its first three months. Since it started surveying the sky in July, the MIT-led Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite project has identified Pi Mensae b, a “super-Earth” that travels around its star every six days, and LHS 3844b, a rocky world with an orbit of only 11 hours.


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Humanity just planted its flag on the far side of the moon. China's robotic Chang'e 4 mission touched down on the floor of the 115-mile-wide (186 kilometers) Von Kármán Crater Wednesday night (Jan. 2), pulling off the first-ever soft landing on the mysterious lunar far side.


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A Chinese spacecraft could become the first ever to land on the “far side” of the moon tomorrow, in a milestone for human space exploration. The China National Space Administration (CNSA) is aiming to land the craft in the unexplored South Pole-Aitken basin, the largest, oldest, deepest, crater on the moon’s surface. The robotic probe, Chang’e 4, entered an elliptical path around the moon last weekend, drawing as close as 15km (9 miles) from the surface. China’s mission control has not confirmed a time for the touchdown attempt but reports in state-run media suggested it would be early Thursday morning UK time.


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Happy New Year! Follow the New Horizons mission status here for the latest updates on the Ultima Thule flyby


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We hope you all had a very merry great Christmas time. Here is Universe Today’s list of the top astronomy events of 2019!


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In the early morning of Dec. 21, 1968, at Kennedy Space Center’s (KSC) Launch Pad 39A, the five engines of the Saturn V’s first stage came to life precisely on time at 7:51 AM EST, powering up to their full 7.5 million pounds of thrust. The brilliance of the flame was like a second sunrise. At the top of the 6.5-million pound rocket, Apollo 8 astronauts Frank Borman, James A. Lovell, and William A. Anders were strapped inside their Command Module (CM), the first humans to first-hand experience a Saturn V launch. After 2.5 minutes, the first stage had exhausted its fuel, burning it at the rate of 13 tons every second, and had carried the vehicle to an altitude of 40 miles. The second stage took over, burning for more than six minutes before it too fell away. The third stage, called the S-IVB, finished placing Apollo 8 into Earth orbit 11 and a half minutes after liftoff.


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The stunning Korolev crater in the northern lowlands of Mars is filled with ice all year round owing to a trapped layer of cold Martian air that keeps the water frozen. The 50-mile-wide crater contains 530 cubic miles of water ice, as much as Great Bear Lake in northern Canada, and in the centre of the crater the ice is more than a mile thick.


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New NASA research confirms that Saturn is losing its iconic rings at the maximum rate estimated from Voyager 1 & 2 observations made decades ago. The rings are being pulled into Saturn by gravity as a dusty rain of ice particles under the influence of Saturn’s magnetic field.


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Richard Branson's commercial spaceflight company Virgin Galactic literally soared to new heights during a Thursday morning test flight of its rocket-powered SpaceShipTwo space plane. It returned safely to Earth after the flight.


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For the second time in history, a human-made object has reached the space between the stars. NASA's Voyager 2 probe now has exited the heliosphere - the protective bubble of particles and magnetic fields created by the Sun.


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NASA's Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) lander, which touched down on Mars just 10 days ago, has provided the first ever "sounds" of Martian winds on the Red Planet. A media teleconference about these sounds will be held today at 12:30 p.m. EST (9:30 a.m. PST). InSight sensors captured a haunting low rumble caused by vibrations from the wind, estimated to be blowing between 10 to 15 mph (5 to 7 meters a second) on Dec. 1, from northwest to southeast. The winds were consistent with the direction of dust devil streaks in the landing area, which were observed from orbit.


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The first spacecraft to attempt a landing on the far side of the moon is due to blast off from a launch facility in China, a historic step in lunar exploration. The Chinese space agency’s Chang’e 4 mission aims to drop a robotic lander and rover into the moon’s vast and unexplored South Pole-Aitken basin, the largest and deepest impact crater in the solar system.




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27. January - 05:43

Sonne in den Sternzeichen


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29. December - 12:25

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29. December - 11:53

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» of looby

14. April - 01:21

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» of Jan Hattenbach

31. March - 08:53

Komet Hyakutake 1996


» of saltu

31. March - 08:45

Analemma


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