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Topic: NASA

NASA scientists study Aerogel for building habitats on Mars

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – The Red Planet is an inhospitable world. NASA says growing crops on Mars is far easier in science fiction than it will be in reality. Among other challenges, subzero temperatures mean water can persist on the surface only as ice, and the planet’s atmosphere offers little protection to plants (or people) from the Sun’s radiation.

Raising crops on Mars is far easier in science fiction than it will be in real life: The Red Planet is an inhospitable world. Among other challenges, subzero temperatures mean water can persist on the surface only as ice, and the planet’s atmosphere offers little protection to plants (or people) from the Sun’s radiation.

Scientists are exploring how aerogel, a translucent, Styrofoam-like material, could be used as a building material on Mars. Aerogel retains heat; structures built with it could raise temperatures enough to melt water ice on the Martian surface. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Scientists are exploring how aerogel, a translucent, Styrofoam-like material, could be used as a building material on Mars. Aerogel retains heat; structures built with it could raise temperatures enough to melt water ice on the Martian surface. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA scientists analyze Satellite Data to Map California Quake

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA scientists and engineers continue to analyze satellite data for information on fault slips and ruptures a week after two strong earthquakes struck near the city of Ridgecrest in Southern California, 

Their observations are helping local authorities assess damage and will also provide useful information to engineers for designing resilient structures that can withstand ruptures like the ones created by the latest quakes.

NASA's ARIA team produced this map of earthquake damage in Southern California from the recent temblors in July2019. The color variation from yellow to red indicates increasingly more significant surface change, or damage. (NASA/JPL-Caltech, ESA)

NASA’s ARIA team produced this map of earthquake damage in Southern California from the recent temblors in July2019. The color variation from yellow to red indicates increasingly more significant surface change, or damage. (NASA/JPL-Caltech, ESA)

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NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3 gathers data for the first time

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s newest carbon dioxide-measuring mission to launch into space, the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3 (OCO-3), has seen the light. From its perch on the International Space Station, OCO-3 captured its first glimpses of sunlight reflected by Earth’s surface on June 25th, 2019.

Just weeks later, the OCO-3 team was able to make its first determinations of carbon dioxide and solar-induced fluorescence – the “glow” that plants emit from photosynthesis, a process that includes the capture of carbon from the atmosphere.

Preliminary carbon dioxide (CO2) measurements from OCO-3 over the United States. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Preliminary carbon dioxide (CO2) measurements from OCO-3 over the United States. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA Aqua Satellite takes photos before landfall of Tropical Storm Barry

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA –  On Friday, July 12th, 2019, at around 2:00pm local time, NASA’s Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS), aboard the Aqua satellite, captured imagery of Tropical Storm Barry in the Gulf of Mexico. According to the National Hurricane Center, Barry is expected to make landfall over the Louisiana coast on Saturday, likely as a hurricane.

In the infrared AIRS image, the large purple area indicates very cold clouds that have been carried high into the atmosphere by deep thunderstorms. These clouds are associated with heavy rainfall. Warmer areas with shallower rain clouds are shown in blue and green. And the orange and red areas represent mostly cloud-free air.

NASA's AIRS instrument aboard the Aqua Satellite imaged Tropical Storm Barry on the afternoon of July 12, 2019, a day before the storm is expected to make landfall on the Louisiana Coast. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

NASA’s AIRS instrument aboard the Aqua Satellite imaged Tropical Storm Barry on the afternoon of July 12, 2019, a day before the storm is expected to make landfall on the Louisiana Coast. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope discovers Black Hole in unexpected place

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationGreenbelt, MD – NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has found an unexpected thin disk of material furiously whirling around a supermassive black hole at the heart of the magnificent spiral galaxy NGC 3147, located 130 million light-years away.

As if black holes weren’t mysterious enough, astronomers using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope have found an unexpected thin disk of material furiously whirling around a supermassive black hole at the heart of the magnificent spiral galaxy NGC 3147, located 130 million light-years away.

A Hubble Space Telescope image of the spiral galaxy NGC 3147 appears next to an artist's illustration of the supermassive black hole residing at the galaxy’s core. The Hubble image shows off the galaxy's sweeping spiral arms, full of young blue stars, pinkish nebulas, and dust in silhouette. (Hubble Image: NASA, ESA, S. Bianchi (Università degli Studi Roma Tre University), A. Laor (Technion-Israel Institute of Technology), and M. Chiaberge (ESA, STScI, and JHU); illustration: NASA, ESA, and A. Feild and L. Hustak (STScI))

A Hubble Space Telescope image of the spiral galaxy NGC 3147 appears next to an artist’s illustration of the supermassive black hole residing at the galaxy’s core. The Hubble image shows off the galaxy’s sweeping spiral arms, full of young blue stars, pinkish nebulas, and dust in silhouette. (Hubble Image: NASA, ESA, S. Bianchi (Università degli Studi Roma Tre University), A. Laor (Technion-Israel Institute of Technology), and M. Chiaberge (ESA, STScI, and JHU); illustration: NASA, ESA, and A. Feild and L. Hustak (STScI))

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NASA designing Climbing Technology for next generation Robots

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA -NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory engineers in Pasadena, California, have designed a four-limbed robot named LEMUR (Limbed Excursion Mechanical Utility Robot) can scale rock walls, gripping with hundreds of tiny fishhooks in each of its 16 fingers and using artificial intelligence (AI) to find its way around obstacles.

In its last field test in Death Valley, California, in early 2019, LEMUR chose a route up a cliff while scanning the rock for ancient fossils from the sea that once filled the area.

The climbing robot LEMUR rests after scaling a cliff in Death Valley, California. The robot uses special gripping technology that has helped lead to a series of new, off-roading robots that can explore other worlds. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

The climbing robot LEMUR rests after scaling a cliff in Death Valley, California. The robot uses special gripping technology that has helped lead to a series of new, off-roading robots that can explore other worlds. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA uses ALOS-2 satellite to Map aftermath of Earthquakes in California

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA says the damage from two strong Southern California earthquakes that occurred on July 4th and July 5th, 2019 can be seen from space. The earthquakes were- a magnitude 6.4 and a magnitude 7.1, respectively.

The epicenter of the quakes was near the city of Ridgecrest, about 150 miles (241 kilometers) northeast of Los Angeles. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the 7.1 quake was one of the largest to hit the region in some 40 years.

NASA's Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis (ARIA) team created this co-seismic Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) map, which shows surface displacement caused by the recent major earthquakes in Southern California, including the magnitude 6.4 and the magnitude 7.1 events on July 4 and July 5, 2019, respectively. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

NASA’s Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis (ARIA) team created this co-seismic Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) map, which shows surface displacement caused by the recent major earthquakes in Southern California, including the magnitude 6.4 and the magnitude 7.1 events on July 4 and July 5, 2019, respectively. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA engineers make new Plan to keep Voyager 1, Voyager 2 going

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA engineers have been able to keep Voyager 1 and 2 spacecrafts flying for nearly 42 years, with careful planning and dashes of creativity, far longer than any other spacecraft in history.

To ensure that these vintage robots continue to return the best science data possible from the frontiers of space, mission engineers are implementing a new plan to manage them. And that involves making difficult choices, particularly about instruments and thrusters.

This artist's concept depicts one of NASA's Voyager spacecraft, including the location of the cosmic ray subsystem (CRS) instrument. Both Voyagers launched with operating CRS instruments. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

This artist’s concept depicts one of NASA’s Voyager spacecraft, including the location of the cosmic ray subsystem (CRS) instrument. Both Voyagers launched with operating CRS instruments. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s CaveR rover helps scientists explore Underground Life

 

NASA Scientists test out new methods of discovering life in California lava tubes that could one day be used on other worlds.

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationSilicon Valley, CA – NASA says imagine descending into a cave carved out by lava to work alongside a rover about the size of Spirit and Opportunity on Mars, watching the pristine wilderness of a national park transition into tall pillars and stalactites, all in a search for subterranean microbes.

That was a typical day for NASA’s Biologic and Resource Analog Investigations in Low Light Environments project, also known as BRAILLE, while on deployment. Operated out of NASA’s Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, the BRAILLE team is developing the capability to detect life on the walls of volcanic caves from afar.

The CaveR rover preparing to search for life on the walls of a lava tube in Lava Beds National Monument in northeastern California. The rover's instrumentation can be seen in the box on its right side. (NASA)

The CaveR rover preparing to search for life on the walls of a lava tube in Lava Beds National Monument in northeastern California. The rover’s instrumentation can be seen in the box on its right side. (NASA)

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NASA successfully tests Orion Spacecraft’s Launch Abort System

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – On Tuesday, July 2nd, 2019, NASA had a successful demonstration of how the Orion spacecraft’s launch abort system can outrun a speeding rocket and pull astronauts to safety during an emergency during launch. The test is another milestone in the agency’s preparation for Artemis missions to the Moon that will lead to astronaut missions to Mars.

During the approximately three-minute test, called Ascent Abort-2, a test version of the Orion crew module launched at 6:00am CDT from Space Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on a modified Peacekeeper missile procured through the U.S. Air Force and built by Northrop Grumman.

Ascent Abort-2 successfully launched at 6:00am CDT from Space Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. (NASA)

Ascent Abort-2 successfully launched at 6:00am CDT from Space Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. (NASA)

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