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SPACE & SCIENCE NEWS: March 2010
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Large Hadron Collider breaks high-energy records Mar 31, 2010
Runaway star may have spawned the solar system Mar 31, 2010
Supernova blasts nearby star cluster Mar 30, 2010
Collider to begin science quest Mar 30, 2010
Probe sees 'Pac-man in the moon' Mar 30, 2010
Snowblower on Enceladus Mar 29, 2010
Comet crash creates potential for life Mar 27, 2010
Microbes thrive in harsh, Mars-like lakes Mar 27, 2010
Pluto's smallest neighbors prove tough to find Mar 27, 2010
Tiny cube to tackle space debris Mar 27, 2010
Space tourism: We have lift-off Mar 26, 2010
Cuts cast doubt on asteroid plan Mar 25, 2010
The solar system's 10 strangest moons Mar 25, 2010
Mars rover examines odd material at small, young crater Mar 25, 2010
Found: 90% of the universe Mar 24, 2010
Bully galaxy rules the neighborhood Mar 24, 2010
First close-up of star factories in distant universe Mar 24, 2010
NASA Mars rover getting smarter as it gets older Mar 24, 2010
SpaceShipTwo makes its first flight Mar 23, 2010
Neptune may have eaten a planet and stolen its moon Mar 22, 2010
Unprecedented eruption catches astronomers by surprise Mar 22, 2010
Moon marriage may have given Jupiter a ring Mar 21, 2010
Large Hadron Collider smashes energy record again Mar 20, 2010
Invisibility cloak created in 3-D Mar 19, 2010
Secret mini-shuttle could launch April 19 Mar 19, 2010
NASA's Spitzer unearths primitive black holes Mar 18, 2010
New exoplanet like 'one of ours' Mar 17, 2010
Planck spies massive dust clouds Mar 17, 2010
Spitzer detects the 'heartbeat' of star formation in the Milky Way Mar 17, 2010
Rogue star to hit the solar system Mar 16, 2010
Phobos flyby images Mar 16, 2010
Falcon 9 rocket engines briefly ignite on launch pad Mar 15, 2010
Magnetic flows cause sunspot lows, study shows Mar 14, 2010
Obama NASA plans 'catastrophic' say Moon astronauts Mar 13, 2010
Cassini data show ice and rock mixture inside Titan Mar 12, 2010
Einstein passes cosmic test Mar 11, 2010
DR Congo ring may be giant 'impact crater' Mar 10, 2010
LHC to shut down for a year to address safety concerns Mar 10, 2010
Did 'midwife molecule' assemble first life on Earth? Mar 9, 2010
ow to save the Earth via the World Wide Web Mar 9, 2010
Heavy antimatter created in gold collisions Mar 8, 2010
China maintains hectic pace for more space program firsts Mar 7, 2010
Dark, dangerous asteroids found lurking near Earth Mar 6, 2010
Probe may have found interstellar dust Mar 6, 2010
Shields down! Earth's mag field may drop in a flash Mar 5, 2010
Herschel unveils life-enabling molecules in Orion Nebula Mar 5, 2010
Is that Saturn's moon Titan or Utah? Mar 5, 2010
Closest Phobos flyby gathers data Mar 5, 2010
Universe's high-energy haze gets murkier Mar 5, 2010
First of missing primitive stars discovered Mar 4, 2010
Lopsided stellar disks help black holes guzzle gas Mar 4, 2010
Clues to Antarctica space blast Mar 3, 2010
Virgin Galactic sees space test flights in 2011 Mar 3, 2010
Mars Express heading for closest flyby of Phobos Mar 3, 2010
Radar map of buried martian ice adds to climate record Mar 3, 2010
Chilean quake may have shortened Earth days Mar 2, 2010
Ice deposits found at Moon's pole Mar 2, 2010
CERN nuclear team restarts Large Hadron Collider Mar 1, 2010
Ancient impact hammered Northern Hemisphere Mar 1, 2010


CERN scientists watch as the Large Hadron Collider fires up. Photo: Anja Niedringhaus/AP
Large Hadron Collider breaks high-energy records
(Mar 31, 2010)


Staff working on the largest scientific instrument in the world joined in a standing ovation yesterday as the machine began its long search for new particles, forces and extra dimensions of space. Applause broke out across CERN, 12.06pm BST, the moment when subatomic particles traveling at close to light-speed were slammed together in the machine, creating the highest energy particle collisions a laboratory has ever achieved.

Read more. Source: The Guardian

The solar system may have formed from the ashes of a massive star like WR124 (pictured), which is shedding vast amounts of material in winds. Image: Y. Grosdidier et al./WFPC2/HST/NASA
Runaway star may have spawned the solar system
(Mar 31, 2010)


The solar system may have been born inside the remains of a single star that ran away from its family, rather than from a tight-knit clan of stars. If so, it may be more unusual than previously thought. This conclusion comes from studies of so-called calcium-aluminum inclusions in meteorites.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

G54.1+0.3. Image credit: NASA/CXC/JPL-Caltech/Harvard-Smithsonian CfA
Supernova blasts nearby star cluster
(Mar 30, 2010)


A new image from NASA's Chandra and Spitzer space telescopes shows the dusty remains of a collapsed star. The dust is flying past and engulfing a nearby family of stars. "Scientists think the stars in the image are part of a stellar cluster in which a supernova exploded," said Tea Temin of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, who led the study.

Read more. Source: NASA/JPL

The CMS is one of four giant detectors at the Large Hadron Collider
Collider to begin science quest
(Mar 30, 2010)


The Large Hadron Collider is about to start the work that could lead to the discovery of fundamental new physics. Scientists working on the European machine will later attempt to smash beams of proton particles together at unprecedented energies. The seven-trillion-electronvolt (TeV) collisions will initiate 18–24 months of intensive investigations at the LHC.

Read more. Source: BBC

Mimas and a map of temperature variations that looks like Pac-Man
Probe sees 'Pac-man in the moon'
(Mar 30, 2010)


The Cassini spacecraft in orbit around Saturn has caught an interesting new view of the tiny moon Mimas. The probe measured temperature differences across the object's surface and produced a map that looks just like the 1980s Pac-Man video games icon. Scientists are unsure why Mimas should display such variations but say it is probably related to the diversity of textures in the surface materials.

Read more. Source: BBC

Thin strips of bright, icy material stretch across thousands of kilometers from the ice jets at the South Pole of the Enceladus in Saturn's E Ring. This back lit image in visible light was taken by the wide angle camera of Cassini from a distance of 2.1 million m. Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Snowblower on Enceladus
(Mar 29, 2010)


Cassini's nose dives through Saturn's E ring have yielded insights on the give and take of ice particles between Enceladus and the ring. Some of the moon's jets shoot ice grains far enough to become part of the E ring. But even the ice grains that make it to the E ring tend to be recaptured by Enceladus within a few orbits as the moon moves around Saturn.

Read more. Source: Science Daily

comet. Image source: NASA
Comet crash creates potential for life
(Mar 27, 2010)


Striking a glancing blow to a planet could create the perfect conditions in a comet's icy core to create amino acids – molecules that are vital to forming life on Earth. This shock-compression theory for making amino acids has been developed by Nir Goldman and his colleagues at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California.

Read more. Source: Nature

Shallow lakes that lie between dunes in Australia can be extremely acidic and salty. Orbital image: Image Science and Analysis Laboratory/NASA-JSC
Microbes thrive in harsh, Mars-like lakes
(Mar 27, 2010)


Life not only survives but thrives in Australian lakes where conditions may be as harsh as those on ancient Mars, a new DNA analysis suggests. Minerals on Mars studied by the NASA rovers suggest water once flowed on the planet's surface, but was very salty and acidic, raising doubts about whether it could have supported life.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

Kuiper Belt
Pluto's smallest neighbors prove tough to find
(Mar 27, 2010)


Since 1992 hundreds of large objects, most more than 100 km in diameter, have been spotted in the Kuiper Belt, including some of the roughly Pluto-size bodies that spurred a redefinition of the word "planet" and relegated Pluto to dwarf status. But the smallest Kuiper Belt objects have been elusive. Although they should be numerous, no body smaller than about 30 km has been directly spotted.

Read more. Source: Scientific American

Model of Cubesat
Tiny cube to tackle space debris
(Mar 27, 2010)


UK researchers have developed a device to drag space debris out of orbit. They plan to launch a demonstration of their "CubeSail" next year. It is a small satellite cube that deploys a thin, 25-sq-m plastic sheet. Residual air molecules still present in the spacecraft's low-Earth orbit will catch the sheet and pull the object out of the sky much faster than is normal.

Read more. Source: BBC

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