Astronomy

This image made available by NASA on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2019 shows images with separate color and detail information, and a composited image of both, showing Ultima Thule, about 1 billion miles beyond Pluto. The New Horizons spacecraft encountered it on Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019. (NASA via AP)
January 03, 2019 - 1:25 am
LAUREL, Md. (AP) — A NASA spacecraft 4 billion miles from Earth yielded its first close-up pictures Wednesday of the most distant celestial object ever explored, depicting what looks like a reddish snowman. Ultima Thule, as the small, icy object has been dubbed, was found to consist of two fused-...
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In this photo provided by NASA, New Horizons principal investigator Alan Stern, of the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colo., center, celebrates with school children at the exact moment that the New Horizons spacecraft made the closest approach of Kuiper Belt object Ultima Thule, early Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019, at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md. (Bill Ingalls/NASA via AP)
January 01, 2019 - 4:40 pm
LAUREL, Md. (AP) — NASA's New Horizons spacecraft pulled off the most distant exploration of another world Tuesday, skimming past a tiny, icy object 4 billion miles from Earth that looks to be shaped like a bowling pin. Flight controllers in Maryland declared success 10 hours after the high-risk,...
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FILE - This file mosaic image composed of 12 PolyCam images collected on Dec. 2, 2018, and provided by NASA shows the asteroid Bennu. The Osiris-Rex spacecraft entered orbit Monday, Dec. 31, 2018, around the asteroid Bennu, 70 million miles (110 million kilometers) from Earth. It’s the smallest celestial body ever to be orbited by a spacecraft. Bennu is just 1,600 feet (500 meters) across. (NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona via AP, File)
December 31, 2018 - 8:32 pm
LAUREL, Md. (AP) — A NASA spacecraft has gone into orbit around an ancient asteroid, setting a pair of records. The Osiris-Rex spacecraft entered orbit Monday around the asteroid Bennu, 70 million miles (110 million kilometers) from Earth. It's the smallest celestial body ever to be orbited by a...
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FILE - This image made available by NASA in March 2017 shows Pluto illuminated from behind by the sun as the New Horizons spacecraft travels away from it at a distance of about 120,000 miles (200,000 kilometers). The probe will ring in 2019 by exploring an even more distant and mysterious world. (NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute via AP)
December 27, 2018 - 12:03 pm
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The spacecraft team that brought us close-ups of Pluto will ring in the new year by exploring an even more distant and mysterious world. NASA's New Horizons spacecraft will zip past the scrawny, icy object nicknamed Ultima Thule (TOO-lee) soon after the stroke of...
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Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks on the phone with a teenager who visited a presidential plane to film its interiors in Luhansk, Russia, Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2018. (Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik/Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
December 26, 2018 - 6:38 am
MOSCOW (AP) — The Kremlin says the Russian military has successful tested a new hypersonic glide vehicle. It said Russian President Vladimir Putin oversaw the test launch of the Avangard vehicle from the Defense Ministry's control room. In Wednesday' test, the weapon was launched from the...
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This image made from video provided by Durham University astronomy researcher Jacob Kegerreis shows a computer simulation generated by the open-source code SWIFT that depicts an object crashing into the planet Uranus. Kegerreis says the detailed simulations show that the collision and reshaping of Uranus 3 billion to 4 billion years ago likely caused the massive planet to tilt about 90 degrees on its side. (Jacob A. Kegerreis/Durham University via AP)
December 21, 2018 - 11:02 am
WASHINGTON (AP) — Uranus is a lopsided oddity, the only planet to spin on its side. Scientists now think they know how it got that way: It was pushed over by a rock at least twice as big as Earth. Durham University astronomy researcher Jacob Kegerreis says detailed computer simulations show that an...
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This photo provided by NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, shows the new Mars lander placing a quake monitor on the planet’s dusty red surface. The unprecedented milestone occurred less than a month after Mars InSight’s touchdown. InSight’s robotic arm removed the seismometer from the spacecraft deck and set it directly on the ground Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2018 to monitor Mars quakes.(NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory via AP)
December 20, 2018 - 9:46 am
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — NASA's new Mars lander has placed a quake monitor on the planet's dusty red surface. The milestone occurred less than a month after Mars InSight's touchdown. InSight's robotic arm removed the seismometer from the spacecraft deck and set it on the ground Wednesday to...
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FILE - This Dec. 24, 1968, file photo made available by NASA shows the Earth behind the surface of the moon during the Apollo 8 mission. (William Anders/NASA via AP, File)
December 18, 2018 - 12:35 pm
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Fifty years ago on Christmas Eve, a tumultuous year of assassinations, riots and war drew to a close in heroic and hopeful fashion with the three Apollo 8 astronauts reading from the Book of Genesis on live TV as they orbited the moon. To this day, that 1968 mission is...
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This image provided by the Carnegie Institution for Science shows an artist's concept of a dwarf planet that astronomers say is the farthest known object in our solar system, which they have nicknamed "Farout." The International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center announced the discovery of the pink cosmic body Monday, Dec. 17, 2018. (Roberto Molar Candanosa/Carnegie Institution for Science via AP)
December 17, 2018 - 4:20 pm
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Astronomers have spotted the farthest known object in our solar system — and they've nicknamed the pink cosmic body "Farout." The International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center announced the discovery Monday. "Farout" is about 120 astronomical units away — that's...
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This Oct. 26, 2018, image captured by Rover-1A, and provided by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) on Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018, shows the surface of asteroid Ryugu. Japan's space agency JAXA said Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018, more than 200 photos taken by two small rovers on the asteroid show no signs of a smooth area for the planned touchdown of a spacecraft early next year. (JAXA via AP)
December 13, 2018 - 6:48 am
TOKYO (AP) — Japan's space agency says more than 200 photos taken by two small rovers on an asteroid show no signs of a smooth area for the planned touchdown of a spacecraft early next year. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency said Thursday the two solar-powered rovers have become inactive and...
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