Breakthrough Lofts the Smallest Satellites Ever, not Interstellar Yet, but a Step Forward

Breakthrough Initiatives achieved a major milestone with the recent deployment of their Sprite satellites, the smallest satellites in history.
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Ready to Leave Low Earth Orbit? Prototype Construction Begins for a Deep Space Habitat

As part of NASA’s NextSTEP-2 program, Lockheed Martin was recently awarded a Phase II contract to continue work on their Deep Space Habitat prototype.
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Dream Chaser Mini-Shuttle to Fly ISS Resupply Missions on ULA Atlas V

The first two missions of the unmanned Dream Chaser mini-shuttle carrying critical cargo to the International Space Station (ISS) will fly on the most powerful version of the Atlas V rocket and start as soon as 2020, announced Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) and United Launch Alliance (ULA). “We have selected United Launch Alliance’s Atlas V […]
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Ancient Volcanoes on Mars Could Have Been the Place for Life

A new study by an international team of scientists has found evidence of recent volcanic activity on Mars, which could also lead to evidence of ancient life.
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Good News for Future Moon Bases. There’s Water Inside the Moon

A new study by a team from Brown University has revealed evidence of widespread water on the lunar surface, which could also point towards water in the interior.
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The chemistry of episodic accretion in embedded objects (Rab et al.)

Vol. 604
In section 6. Interstellar and circumstellar

The chemistry of episodic accretion in embedded objects. 2D radiation thermo-chemical models of the post-burst phase

by Ch. Rab, V. Elbakyan, E. Vorobyov, et al. A&A 604, A15

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Using a new model for the chemistry of episodic accretion based on the 2D, radiation thermo-chemical disk code PRODIMO, the authors investigate observational signatures of the chemical evolution in the post-accretion burst phase for embedded protostellar sources. During an accretion burst, chemical species such as CO sublimate from the dust surfaces. When the burst ends, they freeze out again. This occurs from the inside out, because of the radial density gradient in the disk and envelope structure. The authors demonstrate that the inside-out freeze out produces clear observational signatures in spectral line emission, such as rings, and distinct features in the slope of radial intensity profiles. These can help identify post accretion burst targets in a model-independent way.

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What is the Weather Like on Mercury?

The weather on Mercury, such as it is, consists of extreme highs and extreme lows in temperature, owing to its orbit and distance from the Sun.
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Messier 51 – the Whirlpool Galaxy

Located between 19 and 27 million light-years away in the Canes Venatici constellation, is the famous Whirlpool Galaxy (aka. Messier 51)
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Musk Drops Propulsive Landing Plans for SpaceX Crew Dragon

SpaceX is dropping its original plans to propulsively ground land the advanced crewed version of their Dragon spacecraft planned for missions carrying astronauts returning from the International Space Station (ISS) – in a decision that potentially impacts future plans for Mars landings as well.
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Earth-Sized Planet Takes Just Four Hours to Orbit its Star

The Kepler space observatory has made some interesting finds since it began its mission back in March of 2009. Even after the mission suffered the loss of two reaction wheels, it has continued to make discoveries as part of its K2 mission. All told, the Kepler and K2 missions have detected a total of 5,106 […]
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Advanced Civilizations Could Build a Galactic Internet with Planetary Transits

In a recently published paper, Dr. Duncan Forgan proposed that alien civilizations could create a “galactic internet” by using artificial transits to communicate.
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