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SPACE & SCIENCE NEWS: August 2011
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NASA's Chandra finds nearest pair of supermassive black holes Aug 31, 2011
Jupiter-bound probe captures Earth And Moon Aug 31, 2011
Dolphins, aliens, and the search for intelligent life Aug 30, 2011
NASA's Swift sees star gobbled up by black hole Aug 29, 2011
Human Mars trips may need giant larder – or clever ideas Aug 29, 2011
Hotel in orbit: ultimate room-with-a-view for the ultra-rich Aug 28, 2011
Nearest Type Ia supernova in decades erupts in M101 Aug 27, 2011
Simplest form of supersymmetry in doubt Aug 27, 2011
Secrets of asteroid Itokawa revealed in dust fragments Aug 27, 2011
Astronomers discover planet made of diamond Aug 26, 2011
String theorists suggest stable wormholes possible Aug 25, 2011
NASA's WISE mission discovers coolest class of stars Aug 24, 2011
Spaceport's first phase nearly done Aug 24, 2011
Human-like robot comes alive aboard space station Aug 24, 2011
Why the lights are going out in the Universe Aug 22, 2011
Fossil microbes discovered in Australia could be oldest known life form Aug 22, 2011
Final launch for historic pads Aug 21, 2011
New rover snapshots capture Endeavour Crater vistas Aug 20, 2011
Aliens may destroy humanity to protect other civilizations, say scientists Aug 18, 2011
Star of Contact helps keep search for real aliens alive Aug 18, 2011
Is the answer to life, the universe, and everything theta one-three? Aug 18, 2011
Giant space blob glows from within Aug 17, 2011
NASA plans to visit a near-Earth asteroid Aug 17, 2011
Dragon to launch to ISS in Novemeber Aug 16, 2011
'Earth-Mars' collision may have happened in alien solar system Aug 15, 2011
VV 340: A cosmic exclamation point Aug 14, 2011
GRAIL launch less than one month away Aug 12, 2011
Alien world is blacker than coal Aug 11, 2011
Animal's genetic code redesigned Aug 11, 2011
Search for the Higgs boson goes public Aug 11, 2011
Launch of fastest aircraft ever built imminent Aug 11, 2011
Solar flares: What does it take to be X-class? Aug 10, 2011
NASA finds lost spacecraft on dark side of the Moon Aug 9, 2011
Distant star moved by tides Aug 9, 2011
Putting it all together on Titan Aug 9, 2011
DNA building blocks can be made in space Aug 9, 2011
What aliens could learn from the stuff we’ve left in space Aug 8, 2011
Crowded, but suspiciously quiet? Aug 8, 2011
Antimatter belt found around Earth Aug 7, 2011
Solar storms set to hit Earth Aug 7, 2011
Boeing pilots to fly on first CTS-100 mission Aug 5, 2011
Juno launch successful Aug 5, 2011
Gagarin microsatellite launched from ISS on second try Aug 5, 2011
NASA spacecraft data suggest water flowing on Mars Aug 4, 2011
Juno Jupiter probe will be solar-powered Aug 4, 2011
'Multiverse' theory suggested by microwave background Aug 3, 2011
Earth may have had a second moon Aug 3, 2011
Juno to show Jupiter's magnetic field in high-def Aug 2, 2011
>Oxygen molecules found in space for the first time Aug 1, 2011
Dawn spacecraft begins science orbits of Vesta Aug 1, 2011


NGC 3393
NASA's Chandra finds nearest pair of supermassive black holes
(Aug 31, 2011)


The Chandra X-ray Observatory has detected two supermassive black holes inside the spiral galaxy NGC 3393. At a distance of 160 million light-years, this is the nearest such pairing known and the first to be found inside a spiral galaxy. Separated by only 490 light years, the black holes in NGC 3393 are likely the remnant of a merger of two galaxies of unequal mass a billion or more years ago.

Read more. Source: NASA/Chandra

Earth and Moon imaged by Juno spacecraft
Jupiter-bound probe captures Earth And Moon
(Aug 31, 2011)


On its way to Jupiter, NASA's Juno spacecraft took time to capture its home planet and its natural satellite – the Moon. "This is a remarkable sight people get to see all too rarely," said Scott Bolton, Juno principal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. "This view of our planet shows how Earth looks from the outside, illustrating a special perspective of our role and place in the universe. We see a humbling yet beautiful view of ourselves."

Read more. Source: NASA/JPL

dolphin jumping
Dolphins, aliens, and the search for intelligent life
(Aug 30, 2011)


What other forms might advanced intelligence take across the Galaxy and beyond? Of course, it could be that we're alone. On the other hand, just as life in general might be vastly more diverse than what we see on Earth (already diverse enough!) so too could intelligence. Dolphins offer offer a clue as to how a species can be very smart – perhaps smarter than us in some ways – in the absence of technology.

Read more. Source: Astrobiology Magazine

Sw 1644+57
NASA's Swift sees star gobbled up by black hole
(Aug 29, 2011)


On Mar. 28, NASA's Swift's Burst Alert Telescope discovered a series of powerful X-ray blasts coming from a source in the constellation Draco. Astronomers around the world studied the unusual explosion, which is now known as Sw 1644+57. More than two months later, and with high-energy X-rays still coming from the spot, astronomers are convinced they're witnessing the destruction of a star as it plunges into the central black hole of a galaxy nearly 4 billion light-years away.

Read more. Source: NASA/Swift

astronaut playing with food
Human Mars trips may need giant larder – or clever ideas
(Aug 29, 2011)


When astronauts do eventually set out on the long journey to Mars (and back), how are they going to be able to pack enough food? Growing their own is one option – a possibility first suggested about a century ago by the rocket pioneer Konstantin Tsiolkovsky.

Read more. Source: Nature

hotel in space
Hotel in orbit: ultimate room-with-a-view for the ultra-rich
(Aug 28, 2011)


Russian engineers have announced the last word in get-away-from-it-all holidays, revealing plans to put a hotel into orbit 200 miles above Earth by 2016. The four-room Hotel in the Heavens would house up to seven guests who would be able to cavort in zero-gravity while watching as our planet turns.

Read more. Source: The Guardian

PTF 11kly
Nearest Type Ia supernova in decades erupts in M101
(Aug 27, 2011)


A Type Ia supernova discovered on Aug. 24 is closer to Earth – approximately 21 million light-years away – than any other of its kind in a generation. Astronomers believe they caught the supernova within hours of its explosion, a rare feat made possible with a specialized survey telescope and state-of-the-art computational tools.

Read more. Source: Univ. of Calif., Berkeley

Particle collision artwork
Simplest form of supersymmetry in doubt
(Aug 27, 2011)


Not just the Higgs but supersymmetry, too, is losing places to hide according to the latest results from the Large Hadron Collider. Data collected by the LHC Beauty (LHCb) experiment have virtually put paid to the simplest form of supersymmetry.

Read more. Source: BBC

Dust particle from Itokawa
Secrets of asteroid Itokawa revealed in dust fragments
(Aug 27, 2011)


After a long, eventful journey that almost ended in failure, Japan's Hayabusa spacecraft brought back tiny samples of the "rubble-pile" asteroid Itokawa. Among the findings from those samples: S-class asteroids, like Itokawa, are probably the source of most of the small meteorites found on Earth, and Itokawa was almost certainly once part of a much larger object.

Read more. Source: BBC

The pulsar J1719-1438 and its planet
Astronomers discover planet made of diamond
(Aug 26, 2011)


Astronomers have spotted an exotic planet that seems to be made of diamond racing around a pulsar in our galactic backyard. The new planet is far denser than any other known so far and consists largely of carbon. Because it is so dense, scientists calculate the carbon must be crystalline, so a large part of this strange world will effectively be diamond.

Read more. Source: Reuters

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