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NASA’s AIRS instrument observes Tropical Storm Fay as it hits East Coast

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – Tropical Storm Fay is sweeping across New England, with the center of the storm making landfall about 10 miles (15 kilometers) north-northeast of Atlantic City, New Jersey, at around 5:00pm local time.

At that time, Fay had maximum sustained winds of around 50 mph (85 kph). Forecasters predicted the storm will dump up to 7 inches (18 centimeters) of rain along its path from Delaware into New Jersey.

NASA's AIRS instrument captured this image of Tropical Storm Fay around 2 p.m. local time on July 10, 2020, as the storm swept through New England. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

NASA’s AIRS instrument captured this image of Tropical Storm Fay around 2 p.m. local time on July 10, 2020, as the storm swept through New England. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s proposed VERITAS spacecraft would explore the depths of Venus

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA –  Under consideration to become the next NASA Discovery Program mission, VERITAS would reveal the inner workings of Earth’s mysterious “twin.”

Imagine Earth. Now fill the skies with thick, Sun-obscuring clouds of sulfuric acid; boil off the oceans by cranking up the temperature to 900 degrees Fahrenheit (nearly 500 degrees Celsius), and boost the air pressure high enough to flatten you like a pancake. What you now have is Venus, a rocky planet similar in size to Earth but different in almost every other way.

An artist's concept of active volcanos on Venus, depicting a subduction zone where the foreground crust plunges into the planet's interior at the topographic trench. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/Peter Rubin)

An artist’s concept of active volcanos on Venus, depicting a subduction zone where the foreground crust plunges into the planet’s interior at the topographic trench. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/Peter Rubin)

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NASA reports Comet NEOWISE passes by the Sun, Providing a Treat for Observers

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA says a comet visiting from the most distant parts of our solar system is putting on a spectacular nighttime display. Named Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE, the comet made its once-in-our-lifetimes close approach to the Sun on July 3rd, 2020, and will cross outside Earth’s orbit on its way back to the outer parts of the solar system by mid-August.

The comet cruised just inside Mercury’s orbit on July 3rd. This very close passage by the Sun is cooking the comet’s outermost layers, causing gas and dust to erupt off the icy surface and creating a large tail of debris. And yet the comet has managed to survive this intense roasting.

Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE appears as a string of fuzzy red dots in this composite of several heat-sensitive infrared images taken by NASA's Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) mission on March 27, 2020. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE appears as a string of fuzzy red dots in this composite of several heat-sensitive infrared images taken by NASA’s Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) mission on March 27, 2020. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA InSight Lander’s Arm helps it’s Mole get buried, resumes Science Activities

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s InSight lander has been using its robotic arm to help the heat probe known as the “mole” burrow into Mars. The mission is providing the first look at the Red Planet’s deep interior to reveal details about the formation of Mars and, ultimately, all rocky planets, including Earth.

Akin to a 16-inch-long (40-centimeter-long) pile driver, the self-hammering mole has experienced difficulty getting into the Martian soil since February 2019. It’s mostly buried now, thanks to recent efforts to push down on the mole with the scoop on the end of the robotic arm.

The movement of sand grains in the scoop on the end of NASA InSight's robotic arm suggests that the spacecraft's self-hammering "mole," which is in the soil beneath the scoop, had begun tapping the bottom of the scoop while hammering on June 20, 2020. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

The movement of sand grains in the scoop on the end of NASA InSight’s robotic arm suggests that the spacecraft’s self-hammering “mole,” which is in the soil beneath the scoop, had begun tapping the bottom of the scoop while hammering on June 20, 2020. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

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NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover begins Summer Trip

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover has started a road trip that will continue through the summer across roughly a mile (1.6 kilometers) of terrain. By trip’s end, the rover will be able to ascend to the next section of the 3-mile-tall Martian (5-kilometer-tall) mountain it’s been exploring since 2014, searching for conditions that may have supported ancient microbial life.

Located on the floor of Gale Crater, Mount Sharp is composed of sedimentary layers that built up over time. Each layer helps tell the story about how Mars changed from being more Earth-like – with lakes, streams and a thicker atmosphere – to the nearly-airless, freezing desert it is today.

Stitched together from 28 images, NASA's Curiosity Mars rover captured this view from "Greenheugh Pediment" on April 9, 2020, the 2,729th Martian day, or sol, of the mission. In the foreground is the pediment's sandstone cap. At center is the "clay-bearing unit"; the floor of Gale Crater is in the distance. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

Stitched together from 28 images, NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover captured this view from “Greenheugh Pediment” on April 9, 2020, the 2,729th Martian day, or sol, of the mission. In the foreground is the pediment’s sandstone cap. At center is the “clay-bearing unit”; the floor of Gale Crater is in the distance. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

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NASA teams with University Hospitals to combat COVID-19

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationCleveland, OH – NASA’s Glenn Research Center and University Hospitals (UH) in Cleveland have collaborated to develop new methods and technologies for decontaminating personal protective equipment (PPE) for aerospace applications and for safeguarding the health of workers caring for patients with coronavirus (COVID-19).

A team of researchers recently developed and tested two new approaches that could enable health care professionals to sanitize face masks on-site and safely reuse them. These approaches also may be useful to the aerospace community when traditional sterilization techniques might not be available.

NASA teams with University Hospitals to create new ways to decontaminating personal protective equipment (PPE). (University Hospitals)

NASA teams with University Hospitals to create new ways to decontaminating personal protective equipment (PPE). (University Hospitals)

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NASA creates Galactic Cosmic Ray Simulator to assess Space Travel risks of Radiation

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – NASA has created a space radiation simulator where researchers can speed up understanding of radiation risks astronauts face, and develop techniques to reduce those risks, as they head to the Moon under the Artemis Program and prepare for future missions to Mars.

Based on new technology and an innovative design for creating a broad spectrum of galactic cosmic rays (GCRs), the new space radiation simulator was developed through collaborations with world-leading space radiation researchers at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia and the NASA Space Radiation Laboratory at Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York.

Scientists use beams of ions to simulate cosmic rays and assess the risks of space radiation to human space travelers and equipment. (Brookhaven National Lab)

Scientists use beams of ions to simulate cosmic rays and assess the risks of space radiation to human space travelers and equipment. (Brookhaven National Lab)

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NASA works on plan for Suborbital Space Transportation System for Personnel

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – For the first time in the agency’s history, NASA has initiated a new effort to enable NASA personnel to fly on future commercial suborbital spaceflights. NASA’s Flight Opportunities program has successfully worked with emerging commercial suborbital transportation systems to fly research payloads to space for short periods of microgravity time.

In addition, the Flight Opportunities program recently released a call that allows those non-NASA researchers to propose accompanying their payloads in suborbital space.

NASA to develop plan for Flying Personnel on Suborbital Spacecraft. (NASA)

NASA to develop plan for Flying Personnel on Suborbital Spacecraft. (NASA)

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NASA Satellite Data, Analysis Helps Make Earth Better

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationWashington, D.C. – NASA says the number of illegal gold mines in the Amazon is increasing so fast that activists have turned to satellite imagery to identify them. Still, with thousands of new mines a year, the work was overwhelming scientists at Earthrise Alliance – they needed more hands on deck. That’s how ninth graders in Weston, Massachusetts, began locating illegal mining activity in Brazil’s protected Yanomami territory.

Earthrise is one of numerous organizations getting Earth-observation images, data, and analysis – much of which NASA makes available for free – into the hands of people working on sustainability projects.

A ninth grader at Weston High School in Weston, Massachusetts, scours satellite imagery to locate illegal gold mines in the Yanomami protected territory of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil. Founded by former NASA officials, Earthrise Alliance is helping students engage with emerging environmental stories through Earth-observation data. (Earthrise Education)

A ninth grader at Weston High School in Weston, Massachusetts, scours satellite imagery to locate illegal gold mines in the Yanomami protected territory of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil. Founded by former NASA officials, Earthrise Alliance is helping students engage with emerging environmental stories through Earth-observation data. (Earthrise Education)

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NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft radar shows the Moon may be Richer in Metals than thought

 

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationGreenbelt, MD – What started out as a hunt for ice lurking in polar lunar craters turned into an unexpected finding that could help clear some muddy history about the Moon’s formation.

Team members of the Miniature Radio Frequency (Mini-RF) instrument on NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft found new evidence that the Moon’s subsurface might be richer in metals, like iron and titanium, than researchers thought. That finding, published July 1st in Earth and Planetary Science Letters, could aid in drawing a clearer connection between Earth and the Moon.

This image based on data from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft shows the face of the Moon we see from Earth. The more we learn about our nearest neighbor, the more we begin to understand the Moon as a dynamic place with useful resources that could one day even support human presence. (NASA / GSFC / Arizona State University)

This image based on data from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft shows the face of the Moon we see from Earth. The more we learn about our nearest neighbor, the more we begin to understand the Moon as a dynamic place with useful resources that could one day even support human presence. (NASA / GSFC / Arizona State University)

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