All Posts Tagged Tag: ‘European Space Agency’

Satellite Falling to Earth: No Word on Location Yet

Nobody knows where the fragments of the 2,000-pound European satellite will hit or when they will, but what we do know, is that they will begin re-entry into the atmosphere on Sunday or Monday, according to Rune Floberghagen, mission manager for the Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Explorer, better known as GOCE. “Quite literally GOCE is now nearly flying like …

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Satellite GOCE Plunging Towards Earth Soon

Chicken Little finally has a reason to be afraid of things falling from the sky. No, the sky isn’t falling but a European satellite is. GOCE designed to map Earth’s gravitational field will be pulled down sometime in the next few days. Nobody knows where it will crash. The spacecraft is expected to make it to the surface in fragments, …

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Planck Telescope is Officially Dead

The European Space Agency (ESA) today officially announced that the Planck space telescope has been shut off for good. The final command to the telescope was sent from the European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) this afternoon. Planck researchers earlier this week had been preparing the telescope for that final moment, disconnecting its systems and burning off the remainder of its …

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Spacewalk Cut Short by Wardrobe Malfunction

Early this morning, European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Luca Parmitano and NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy exited the International Space Station to conduct assembly and maintenance on the spacecraft. The spacewalk was scheduled to last around 6.5 hours and was being streamed live by the space agencies. The mission was cut short, however, by a malfunction in one astronaut’s spacesuit. Shortly …

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Large Antarctic Lake Suddenly Drained, Shows Study

There are only a few places on Earth where ecosystems have been allowed to evolve for thousands of years in isolated conditions. One of those places in underneath the thick ice of Antarctica, where researchers have uncovered ancient microbes in isolated glacial lakes. This week, a new study has shown that sudden flooding has eliminated one of those lakes. The …

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One Last Look at Herschel as it Flies Away

Back at the end of April, the European Space Agency’s Herschel space observatory ran out of its liquid helium coolant. The coolant was used to cool the telescope’s instruments to near absolute zero, enabling it to observe infrared light coming in from deep space. With the coolant gone, the telescope’s science mission has now ended, though researchers still used the …

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Herschel Telescope Given its Final Command

Over one month ago, the European Space Agency (ESA) announced that the Herschel space observatory had run out of liquid helium coolant. The coolant was necessary to cool the telescope’s instruments to near absolute zero. As planned, the powerful infrared observatory quickly became useless as an astronomy tool. Today, the ESA announced that mission controllers have sent their the very …

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Herschel Telescope Runs Out of Coolant, Ends Mission

The European Space Agency (ESA) today announced that the Herschel space observatory has run out of liquid helium coolant. The coolant is necessary to cool the telescope’s instruments to near absolute zero. Herschel’s ground station in Western Australia this afternoon found that the temperature in all of the telescope’s instruments is rising, confirming that the helium has run out. The …

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Russia Meteor Blast Being Assessed by the ESA

Last week, as astronomers around the world turned their attention toward the passing asteroid 2012 DA14, a meteorite entered Earth’s atmosphere and broke up over Chelyabinsk, Russia. The blast shattered windows and injured hundreds in the small town. The European Space Agency (ESA) today announced that it is studying the event, which isn’t quite as rare as humans might hope. …

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Meteorite Falls in Russia, Lights Up the Sky [VIDEO]

A meteorite only a few meters long fell to Earth above Chelyabinsk, Russia early this morning. The shockwave caused by the object shattered windows and caused hundreds of injuries. A video of the event has quickly become one of the most-watched videos on YouTube today. It shows the object appear in the sky over the Russian city and break up …

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Arctic Sea Ice Volume Declining, Shows Satellite Data

A new European Space Agency (ESA) study has shown that Arctic sea ice has declined significantly since 2003. The study, published recently in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, has confirmed that Arctic ice volume is declining, rather than just sea ice coverage. The paper shows that the ice has declined by (36%) during the fall months and 9% during winter …

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Space Laser Could Detect Counterfeit Foods, Past Life on Mars

The European Space Agency (ESA) today revealed that a laser developed to measure carbon on Mars could soon be used to detect counterfeit food. The device, called a laser isotope ratio-meter, was developed from bulkier laser techniques that needed samples to be collected and brought to them. The new device, developed by the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) in England, is …

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