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SPACE & SCIENCE NEWS: September 2010
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Hubble image of SN 1987A taken in 2010
Hubble telescope re-shoots 1987 supernova
(Sep 6, 2010)

The Hubble space telescope has returned to view one of its favorite subjects – a giant stellar explosion that was first seen on Earth in 1987. The famous supernova is one of the most studied objects in the southern sky. The new image of SN 1987A is the observatory's first picture of the explosion since its systems were repaired and upgraded last year.

Read more. Source: BBC

black hole
Eternal black holes are the ultimate cosmic safes
(Sep 4, 2010)

If you wanted to hide something away for all eternity, where could you put it? Black holes might seem like a safe bet, but Stephen Hawking famously calculated that they leak radiation, and most physicists now think that this radiation contains information about their contents. Now, there may be a way to make an "eternal" black hole that would act as the ultimate cosmic lockbox.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

T=Rex experiment
Space ribbon deployed to surf Earth's magnetic field
(Sep 3, 2010)

A Japanese rocket unfurled a 300-meter-long ribbon in space on Monday, testing technology that could one day allow spacecraft to navigate by surfing Earth's magnetic field. Conventional spacecraft have to burn fuel to manoeuvre in orbit. But the fuel adds weight and cost to the launch and eventually gets used up, limiting the probes' lifetime.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

Weird water lurking inside giant planets
(Sep 2, 2010)

What glows yellow and behaves like a liquid and a solid at the same time? Water – at least in the strange form it appears to take deep within Uranus and Neptune. This exotic stuff might help explain why both planets have bizarre magnetic fields.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

CW Leonis
Old star wallows in 'steam bath'
(Sep 2, 2010)

Europe's Herschel space telescope has looked on as an old giant star wallows in a "steam bath". CW Leonis, sited some 500 light-years from Earth, has long been known to be surrounded by a shroud of water. But Herschel's exquisite ability to track the molecule in space means it can show the water lies close in to the star and reaches a sweltering 700°C.

Read more. Source: BBC

woolly mammoths
Mammoth-killing space blast 'off the hook'
(Sep 1, 2010)

The theory that the great beasts living in North America 13,000 years ago were killed off by a space impact can now be discounted, a new study claims. Mammoths, giant bears, big cats and the like disappeared rapidly from the fossil record, and a comet or asteroid strike was seen as a possible culprit. But tiny diamonds said to have been created in the collision have been misinterpreted, a US-UK team says.

Read more. Source: BBC

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