Latest Space exploration News

First two longlists announced for National Book Awards

Sep. 16, 2020 3:02 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Stories of voting rights, space exploration and displacement at home are among the young people's literature works that appear on the longlist for the National Book Awards. In the translation category, the 10 nominated books originate everywhere from the Middle East to Scandinavia to Japan....

This image released by Netflix shows Challenger 7 on the launchpad in a scene from

Netflix delves into the 'human side' of Challenger disaster

Sep. 15, 2020 10:23 AM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Many Americans have vivid memories of Jan. 28, 1986. That was the day the space shuttle Challenger exploded over a chilly Florida, just seconds after liftoff. School children across the country had tuned in to see Christa McAuliffe become the first teacher in space. One person watching was...

This May 2016 photo provided by researcher Jane Greaves shows the planet Venus, seen from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Akatsuki probe. A report released on Monday, Sept. 14, 2020 says astronomers have found a potential signal of life high in the atmosphere of our nearest neighboring planet. (J. Greaves/Cardiff University/JAXA via AP)

Astronomers see possible hints of life in Venus's clouds

Sep. 14, 2020 2:23 PM EDT

Astronomers have found a potential sign of life high in the atmosphere of neighboring Venus: hints there may be bizarre microbes living in the sulfuric acid-laden clouds of the hothouse planet. Two telescopes in Hawaii and Chile spotted in the thick Venusian clouds the chemical signature of phosphine, a noxious...

A jaguar crouches on an area recently scorched by wildfires at the Encontro das Aguas park in the Pantanal wetlands near Pocone, Mato Grosso state, Brazil, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020. Firefighters, troops and volunteers have been scrambling to find and rescue jaguars and other animals before they are overtaken by the flames, which have been exacerbated by the worst drought in 47 years, strong winds and temperatures exceeding 40 degrees centigrade (104 fahrenheit). (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Battle on to save Brazil's tropical wetlands from flames

Sep. 13, 2020 3:44 PM EDT

BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) — A vast swath of a vital wetlands is burning in Brazil, sweeping across several national parks and obscuring the sun behind dense smoke. Preliminary figures from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, based on satellite images, indicate that nearly 5,800 square miles (1.5 million...

This August 2020 photo provided by Dr. Se-Jin Lee shows a normal mouse and a “twice-muscled” mouse developed at The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine. Findings published on Monday, Sept. 7, 2020, show that muscle-bound mice, similar to the one pictured, held on to their bodybuilder-type physiques during a one month space mission. (Dr. Se-Jin Lee/University of Connecticut School of Medicine via AP)

'Mighty mice' stay musclebound in space, boon for astronauts

Sep. 8, 2020 10:50 PM EDT

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Bulked-up, mutant “mighty mice” held onto their muscle during a monthlong stay at the International Space Station, returning to Earth with ripped bodybuilder physiques, scientists reported Monday. The findings hold promise for preventing muscle and bone loss in...

China's first reusable spacecraft lands after 2-day flight

Sep. 6, 2020 6:10 AM EDT

BEIJING (AP) — China’s first reusable spacecraft landed Sunday after two days in orbit, a possible step toward lower-cost space flight, the government announced. The secretive, military-run space program has released few details of the craft, which was launched Friday aboard a Long March 2F rocket...

This image released by Netflix shows, from left, Mark Ivanir, Hilary Swank and Ray Panthaki from the new series

Hilary Swank leads a mission to Mars in Netflix's 'Away'

Sep. 3, 2020 10:01 AM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Before she went into acting, Hilary Swank was one of those kids who looked up at the sky and dreamed of blasting off to outer space. She got to pretend living out that dream in her new Netflix series, “Away,” debuting Friday, where she plays an astronaut commander leading a...

Jakob van Zyl, key Jet Propulsion Laboratory engineer, dies

Aug. 27, 2020 6:48 PM EDT

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — Jakob van Zyl, an engineer who held crucial positions at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and was involved in numerous space exploration missions over decades, has died. He was 63. Van Zyl, who retired in 2019 after a 33-year career, suffered a heart attack on Monday and died...

Markings points to a patch of penguin guano on an image captured by the Copernicus Sentinel-2 satellite mission Aug. 26, 2019. British scientists say they've confirmed that there are more emperor penguin colonies in Antarctica than previously thought. Researchers at the British Antarctic Survey used satellite images to spot tell-tale evidence of bird droppings. (Copernicus Sentinel-2/ESA via AP)

Poop scoop: Satellite images reveal Antarctic penguin haunts

Aug. 5, 2020 12:24 PM EDT

BERLIN (AP) — British scientists say there are more emperor penguin colonies in Antarctica than previously thought based on evidence of bird droppings spotted from space. A study published Wednesday by scientists at the British Antarctic Survey counted 61 emperor penguin colonies dotted around the...

This photo provided by SpaceX shows a prototype of its Mars ship, Starship, is launched on Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2020 in south Texas. Tuesday night's flight lasted barely 45 seconds, but was an important first for SpaceX's Starship. SpaceX chief Elon Musk tweeted: “Mars is looking real.” Musk says several more short hops are planned before a test version of Starship aims for a high altitude. The latest prototype is relatively plain: It stands a full-scale 100 feet tall  and resembles a steel silo with a cap on top.  (SpaceX via AP)

SpaceX's Mars test rocket makes 1st flight, landing upright

Aug. 5, 2020 11:46 AM EDT

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — SpaceX launched a prototype of its Mars rocketship hundreds of feet into the air, then landed it upright in a successful test flight. The flight lasted barely 45 seconds and reached just 500 feet (150 meters) Tuesday night at the southeastern tip of Texas near Brownsville, but...