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With One-Third of Largest Aquifers Highly Stressed, It’s Time to Explore and Assess the Planet’s Groundwater

Imagine if your bank statement arrived each month and told you how much money you had withdrawn and deposited, but told you nothing about how much money you had at the beginning or end of the month. You’d know whether your balance had grown or shrunk, but you’d have no idea whether you could afford…

Explore Mars with JPL engineer Kobie Boykins

From imagining going boldly where no one has gone before, to sending rovers there in real life, Kobie Boykins turned a childhood dream into a prolific career “Exploring Mars.” A dynamic young engineer at NASA‘s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Boykins is on the front line of Mars exploration. He designed the solar arrays that power the Mars exploration…

Have You Seen the Largest Picture Ever Taken?

On January 5 NASA captured a1.5 billion pixel image (69,536 x 22,230) that requires more than 4 GB of disk space. Its is an image of the Andromeda Galaxy and it was captured using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. One image contains 100 million stars and takes you to more than 40,000 light years.  …

Monster Sunspot Threatens Earth With Solar Storms

Mr. Sun is angry, and Earth better look out.

Comet’s Near Miss with Mars on Tap for Sunday

Heads up, a comet is coming to Mars.

5 Sky Events This Week: Moon Buzzes Beehive, Comet Barnstorms Mars

Sky-watchers enjoy parting views of Saturn, the “lord of the rings,” this week, along with the moon joining a star cluster and a historic encounter between the red planet and an icy interloper.  Sinking Saturn. Starting Tuesday, October 14, sky-watchers get their last chance to see Saturn as it quickly continues to sink in the…

Volcanoes Reveal Lunar Eruptions Long-Lived

Lunar volcanoes look surprisingly long-lived to astronomers.

India Reaches Mars With Low-Cost Mission

India’s new entrant into orbit around Mars, the Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), is a triumph for its  space agency and represents the fourth country to successfully send a spacecraft to the red planet. At a reported cost of $73 million, the mission is also a feat for lower cost exploration. Launched on November 5, 2013,…

MAVEN Arrives in Martian Orbit

MAVEN and Mars, two great things that now go together.

Watch Final Summer Supermoon Tonight

A supermoon is on the rise.

Newfound “Pitbull” Asteroid Will Zip By Earth on Sunday

Good news, folks: The world won’t end on Sunday, when an asteroid nicknamed “Pitbull” will zip past Earth. But asteroid 2014 RC will provide some virtual sky-watching drama for fans of celestial flybys. (Related: “Asteroids and Comets.”) Discovered independently by two different observatory teams on August 31, the 60-foot-wide (20 meters) space rock will come closest to Earth at…

NASA Preps Mars Orbiters for Comet Close Encounter

A cometary near miss for Mars in a few months means meteor risks for NASA’s spacecraft orbiting the red planet. On October 19, the comet Siding Spring will brush by Mars, passing so close that the space agency this week announced it has put together a special playbook filled with protective measures for its orbiters there.…

NASA’s Next Mars Rover Will Make Oxygen

NASA’s next Mars rover will pack a suite of sensors, cameras and an oxygen brewing kit.

Groundwater Depletion in Colorado River Basin Poses Big Risk to Water Security

Let’s step back for a minute and consider the implications of the study released last week on the depletion of groundwater in the Colorado River Basin. For anyone concerned about the future of the American West, the findings of this study – which was published online in the journal Geophysical Research Letters and conducted by…

Milky Way Punier Than We Thought

The Milky Way looks less hefty, but just as beautiful as ever, this summer.