Earth from Space: Rhine waters

Presented by Kelsea Brennan-Wessels from the ESA Web-TV virtual studios. In the one-hundred-seventh edition we examine a Sentinel-1A acquisition over Lake Constance.

See also http://www.esa.int/spaceinimages/Images/2014/05/Lake_Constance to download the image.

via ESA.


The History, and Future, of Space Suits

via scishow:

Reid Reimers explains one of the often-overlooked technologies that humans need to live in, and explore, space: space suits. Learn about the hundred-year history of the pressurized suit, and see what the future of space couture might look like.

Inflatable Heat Shields Could Drop-Ship Bigger Robots

The Hypersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator, or HIAD, is rigorously tested in NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center. This technology is being developed to deliver larger payloads to planets more efficiently.

via Video From Space.


Alberts (Monkeys) in (Near) Space

For more on the V-2 rocket testing in America and the Albert monkeys, check out the article on Vintage Space: http://www.popsci.com/blog-network/vintage-space/alberts-spaceflights-unsung-heroes?dom=PSC&loc=recent&lnk=1&con=the-alberts-spaceflights-unsung-heroes

via Amy Shira Teitel.


It Happened in Space №18 Behind NASA’s First Spacewalk

Ed White made space history when he stepping out from the Gemini 4 spacecraft in 1965, but the spacewalk was actually a fairly last minute addition to the mission.

via Scientific American Space Lab.


NASA Announces Latest Progress, Upcoming Milestones in Hunt for Asteroids

NASA is on the hunt for an asteroid to capture with a robotic spacecraft, redirect to a stable orbit around the moon, and send astronauts to study in the 2020s — all on the agency’s human Path to Mars. Agency officials announced on Thursday recent progress to identify candidate asteroids for its Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), increase public participation in the search for asteroids, and advance the mission’s design.

NASA plans to launch the ARM robotic spacecraft in 2019 and will make a final choice of the asteroid for the mission about a year before the spacecraft launches. NASA is working on two concepts for the mission: the first is to fully capture a very small asteroid in open space, and the second is to collect a boulder-sized sample off of a much larger asteroid. The agency will choose between these two concepts in late 2014 and further refine the mission’s design.

NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope made recent observations of an asteroid, designated 2011 MD, which bears the characteristics of a good candidate for the full capture concept. While NASA will continue to look for other candidate asteroids during the next few years as the mission develops, astronomers are making progress to find suitable candidate asteroids for humanity’s next destination into the solar system.

Duration: 01:22:33

via NASA.


Exploring Europa - Ocean Worlds of the Outer Solar System

Where is the best place to find living life beyond Earth? It may be a small, ice-covered moon of Jupiter or Saturn that harbors some of the most habitable real estate in our Solar System. Life loves liquid water and these moons have lots of it! Dr.Kevin Hand, Deputy Chief Scientist for Solar System Exploration at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory explains the science behind how these oceans exist and what we know about the conditions on these worlds. Dr. Hand focuses on Jupiter’s moon Europa, which is a top priority for future NASA missions and shows how the exploration of Earth’s ocean is helping our understanding of the potential habitability of worlds.

Duration: 01:23:35

via NASA.


Solar Flares and a Virtual Universe

via scishow:

SciShow Space takes you inside solar flares, and how we’ve managed to get the best look at one yet, along with news about a new, Web-based simulation of the earliest days of the universe that you can explore yourself!

Earth from Space: Special edition

In this special edition, David Parker, Chief Executive of the UK Space Agency, and Christopher Merchant from the University of Reading and science leader of the Climate Change Initiative’s sea-surface temperature project, join the show to discuss climate research in the UK.

via ESA.


Which Planets Have Rings?

You think only Saturn has rings? Well, think again. Rings are actually extremely common in our Solar System - they’re all over the place. So which planets - and other objects - sport rings?

via Fraser Cain.


Earth’s ever-changing magnetic field

This animation shows changes in Earth’s magnetic field from January to June 2014 as measured by ESA’s Swarm trio of satellites.

The magnetic field protects us from cosmic radiation and charged particles that bombard Earth, but it is in a permanent state of flux. Magnetic north wanders, and every few hundred thousand years the polarity flips so that a compass would point south instead of north.

Moreover, the strength of the magnetic field constantly changes — and it is currently showing signs of significant weakening.

The field is particularly weak over the South Atlantic Ocean — known as the South Atlantic Anomaly. This weak field has indirectly caused many temporary satellite ‘hiccups’ (called Single Event Upsets) as the satellites are exposed to strong radiation over this area.

via ESA.


Starburst Dwarf Galaxies Played Big Role In Early Universe

Using new observations from the Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers have been able to determine that dwarf galaxies were producing stars at a faster rate than previous studies. FULL STORY: http://goo.gl/j3ZB8m

via Video From Space.


Why Did This Bright Galaxy Go Dark?

In 2013, astronomers became aware the center of galaxy NGC 5548 had seemingly gone dark. Astrophysicist Jelle Kaastra and team now think they know why: a stream of obscuring gas blown by the action of the central supermassive black hole.

Full Story: http://goo.gl/Q0ujcq

via Video From Space.


Astronomy Cast 349: Mercury 7 Astronauts

Before the Apollo Program, there was the Gemini Program, and before Gemini came the Mercury Program. 7 elite astronauts chosen from a pool of military test pilots. How did NASA choose these original 7 men?

Duration: 56:50

via Fraser Cain.