Earth from space banner

SPACE & SCIENCE NEWS: September 2004
home > space & science news > space & science news: September 2004: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

Gusev crater
Mars may have had large sea near rover landing site
(Sep 9, 2004)

Spacecraft observations of the landing area for one of NASA's two Mars rovers now indicate there likely was an enormous sea or lake covering the region in the past, according to a new University of Colorado at Boulder study. Research Associate Brian Hynek of the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics said data from the Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Odyssey spacecraft now show that the region surrounding the Opportunity rover's landing site probably had a body of water at least 330,000 square kilometers, or 127,000 square miles. That would make the ancient sea larger in surface area than all the Great Lakes combined.

Read more. Source: University of Colarado, Boulder

Gensis capsule
Genesis capsule crashes to Earth
(Sep 8, 2004)

A capsule from the Genesis probe, which has been gathering particles blown off the Sun, has crashed back to Earth. The capsule entered the atmosphere as planned at 1555GMT but its drogue parachute failed to open. Hollywood stunt pilots had been waiting to catch the capsule in midair to give its cargo a special soft landing. The particles of solar wind in the capsule were being sought by scientists to help them understand the origin and evolution of the Sun and the planets.

Read more. Source: BBC

Earth and Moon
Noah's Ark plan from top Moon man
(Sep 8, 2004)

The European Space Agency's chief scientist has said that there should be a Noah's Ark on the Moon, in case the Earth is destroyed by an asteroid or nuclear holocaust. Speaking exclusively to BBC News at the British Association Science Festival, Dr Bernard Foing said that the ark should be a repository for the DNA of every single species of plant and animal.

Read more. Source: BBC

Vertical Assembly Building
Frances tears panels from NASA shuttle hangar
(Sep 7, 2004)

NASA managers worried Monday about the prospect of Hurricane Ivan after Hurricane Frances ripped about 1,000 4-by-10-foot aluminum panels off one side of its massive Vehicle Assembly Building, Kennedy Space Center director Jim Kennedy said. Kennedy said center staff will concentrate on protecting the 40-story, 560-foot building from further damage. "I don't see how we could do too much to repair those openings in a few days' time," he said.

Read more. Source: CNN

orbiting hotel
Holidays in space are on the horizon
(Sep 6, 2004)

When SpaceShipOne blazed a contrail into the clear blue sky above the Mojave desert on 21 June 2004, it became the first privately built crewed craft to reach space. With that one flight, Burt Rutan's budget rocket plane broke the government monopoly on spaceflight – leaving pundits excitedly predicting an era of private sub-orbital space travel, with orbital travel and space hotels beckoning. But is there enough consumer demand to support commercial space flight? Maybe, according to a 2002 study by the management consultancy Futron, of Bethesda, Maryland, which boldly predicts that no less than 12,000 people a year will be taking sub-orbital tourist flights by 2020.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

Alien microbes could survive crash-landing
(Sep 5, 2004)

Bacteria could survive crash-landing on other planets, a British team has found. The result supports to the idea that Martian organisms could have fallen to Earth in meteorites and seeded life. Bugs inside lumps of rock can survive impacts at speeds of more than 11 kilometres per second, say the researchers 1. The work also shows that bacteria could survive crashing into icy surfaces such as Jupiter's moons Europa and Ganymede.

Read more. Source: Nature

Astronomers deny ET signal report
(Sep 2, 2004)

Astronomers have moved swiftly to quell speculation they may have received a deep-space radio signal from ET. It was reported on the internet that the signal had been found using the Seti@home screensaver that uses computer downtime to analyse sky data from telescopes. But researchers connected with the project told BBC News Online on Thursday that no contact with extraterrestrials had been made.

Read more. Source: BBC

Arecibo radio telescope
Mysterious signals from 1000 light years away
(Sep 2, 2004)

In February 2003, astronomers involved in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) pointed the massive radio telescope in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, at around 200 sections of the sky. The same telescope had previously detected unexplained radio signals at least twice from each of these regions, and the astronomers were trying to reconfirm the findings. The team has now finished analysing the data, and all the signals seem to have disappeared. Except one, which has got stronger. This radio signal, now seen on three separate occasions, is an enigma. It could be generated by a previously unknown astronomical phenomenon. Or it could be something much more mundane, maybe an artefact of the telescope itself. But it also happens to be the best candidate yet for a contact by intelligent aliens in the nearly six-year history of the SETI@home project.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

Pioneer plaque
Mail, not phone, might be best for interstellar messages
(Sep 1, 2004)

If an extra terrestrial wanted to send a field report describing all she had learned about Earth, she might be better off writing rather than phoning. A new analysis has concluded that a physical object would be a more efficient way to send a long message to the stars than a beam of radio waves. So while we scour the heavens for radio broadcasts from other worlds, we should also search our planetary backyard for a parcel of alien information, says Christopher Rose, an electrical engineer at Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey, who argues his case in this week's Nature.

Read more. Source: Nature

helicopter for capturing Genesis
Scientists track incoming probe
(Sep 1, 2004)

The Genesis probe is a week away from the dramatic conclusion to its mission: returning to Earth a sample of the solar wind, particles from the Sun. Astronomers have been tracking the tiny craft, measuring its trajectory and planning a final course correction before its capsule descends to Utah, US To preserve the delicate cargo, it will be captured mid-air using helicopters flown by Hollywood stunt pilots.

Read more. Source: BBC

1 | 2 | 3 | 4


You are here:

> Space & Science news
> September 2004:
1 | 2 | 3 | 4

Other news sections

Latest science news
Archeo news
Eco news
Health news
Living world news
Paleo news
Strange news
Tech news

Also on this site:

Encyclopedia of Science

Encyclopedia of Alternative Energy and Sustainable Living

News archive