Month: July 2005

  • Active Icy Volcanism on Enceladus

    The Earth has it, Io has it, and now a third world can be added to list. I’m talking about active volcanism. The Cassini spacecraft finds active icy volcanism reshaping the surface of Saturn’s tiny moon Enceladus and spewing water vapor and ice particles into Saturn’s E-ring. What a day for planetary science! read more […]

  • Cassini Confirms Active Enceladus

    The tiny moon orbiting Saturn named Enceladus has become the third body in the solar system known to have current volcanic activity driven by internal heating, after Earth and Jupiter’s moon Io. The surprising discovery was made after the Cassini spacecraft performed a close flyby of Enceladus on July 14, 2005 and returned the closest […]

  • New Planet Discovered in Our Solar System

    The discovery of a tenth planet orbiting our Sun was announced today by Dr. Michael E. Brown of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California, USA. The planet is at least the size of Pluto and perhaps twice as large. It has been designated 2003UB313 for now while the name suggested by its discoverers […]

  • “The Spaceship Company” Formed

    Burt Rutan and Sir Richard Branson have agreed to form a new company to build new sub-orbital spacecraft for the emerging personal spaceflight industry. “The Spaceship Company” will provide equipment and launch vehicles using technology licensed from Scaled Composites for space tourism operators, including Virgin Galactic. Burt Rutan is president of Scaled Composites, the company […]

  • The Great Frontiers of Exploration

    The soft blue pool of light in claustrophobic darkness, the white and crème-colored towers of limestone, the shimmer of hot fluids mixing with cold sea water, the occasional life form swimming back – it is another day in the exciting exploration of the Lost City Hydrothermal Field. Half a kilometer below the surface of the […]

  • SMART-1 Snaps Image of Hadley Rille on the Moon

    The European Space Agency’s SMART-1 spacecraft continues to capture images of the Moon in a mission to test new technologies and return new data about our nearest celestial neighbor. In one of the latest images, Hadley Rille, an enormous lava channel over 3.3 billion years old, stretches toward Mount Hadley in the upper right. Geologists […]

  • Microsoft Windows Vista Beta 1 Announced

    Microsoft is making available the first beta of their new operating system, to be called Windows Vista. Windows Vista is expected to be available near the end of 2006 and it is Microsoft’s first new operating system since Windows XP was released in 2001. Windows Vista’s includes a number of improvements including a translucent glass […]

  • More Lost City Images

    Researchers have been busy exploring the Lost City Hydrothermal Field today. New image stills captured from the mission’s live Internet video feed reveal tall chimneys of calcium carbonate looming in the deep and dark waters and several life forms passing by. A jelly fish appeared to inspect the IFE ROV Hercules as it inspected the […]

  • Space Shuttle Fleet Grounded

    NASA grounded the remaining space shuttle fleet today after video of yesterday’s Discovery launch revealed that a large piece of insulation foam had fallen off the fuel tank. The debris did not hit the Discovery orbiter but the video footage was a frightening reminder of a similar incident that led to the Columbia disaster in […]

  • Successful Launch of the Space Shuttle Discovery

    NASA’s Space Shuttle Discovery successfully launched this morning from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA. The return to flight comes 2 ½ years after the Space Shuttle disaster claimed the lives of seven astronauts returning to Earth after a successful mission. The liftoff occurred at 10:39 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The return to flight has […]

  • Lost City 2005 Mission Images

    The exploration of the Lost City Hydrothermal Field continues. The IFE Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) Hercules and Argus are capturing high definition video and images from sites around the Lost City hot springs system on a mountain top over 2,000 feet below the surface waters of the Atlantic Ocean. This data is then being streamed […]

  • Return to Lost City, Live!

    In a remarkable display of the cutting-edge in robotics, telepresence, and ocean exploration, live video is streaming over the Internet from under the Atlantic Ocean. The public, students, educators, and scientists can all follow along as the crew of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s ship Ronald H. Brown use IFE Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) […]

  • Live Telepresence from the “Lost City”

    The IFE ROV “Hercules” is sending stunning live video – broadcast over the Internet on the NOAA Ocean Explorer site – from near the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at a depth of over 2,000 feet. The mission? To explore the white carbonate chimneys and other geological formations at the “Lost City” site and surrounding areas. read more […]

  • Live from the “Lost City”!

    Image Courtesy NOAA, VBrick, EDS and TELEX/RTS. I am watching live video footage from the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean as I write this, courtesy of the NOAA Ocean Explorer site. The Lost City 2005 Expedition is using telepresence to operate the IFE ROV Hercules to explore the white carbonate chimneys and other geological formations […]

  • Mini Mimas

    The Cassini spacecraft recently returned a raw image of Saturn dwarfing its tiny moon Mimas. On Monday, July 18, 2005 Cassini was approximately 1,642,603 km (1,020,666 miles) away from Mimas and heading out toward its furthest position away from Saturn during this orbit. Orbit 12 will begin on July 24, 2005 with distant flybys of […]

  • Shepherd Moons at Work

    On February 20, 2005, the Cassini spacecraft took a picture of Pandora and Prometheus hard a work shepherding water ice particles and dust into a distinct F-ring unit within Saturn’s larger ring structure. Historically, three main rings were discovered around Saturn, labeled C, B and A from the inside out. Later, fainter rings and structures […]

  • Dust Devils on Mars

    Standing kilometers tall, roaming the desert in crisscrossing paths, vacuuming or depositing dust, and possibly contributing to albedo (surface light reflection) and climate changes, images of dust devils in motion on Mars have been captured by the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit. Spirit captured images of gusts and whirlwinds full of dust marching across Gusev Crater […]

  • “Florida” Wildfire Threatens Arizona Observatory

    The view from Tumamoc Hill west of downtown Tucson says it all. A wildfire has spread to consume approximately 20,000 acres about 40 kilometers (25 miles) south of the city of Tucson in Arizona, United States, after a lightning strike on July 07, 2005. The fire has been given the name “Florida” and has been […]

  • Targeting Enceladus

    The above images and image to the left are the views of Enceladus as the Cassini spacecraft drew closer and closer on Thursday, July 14, 2005. By the time Cassini had passed the small moon it had come to within 172 km (107 miles) of the surface, the closest flyby yet in a 4-year mission […]

  • Enceladus: Active Ice World?

    Enceladus, a tiny moon of Saturn, may be a world of water ice volcanoes actively resurfacing the surrounding terrain, according to planetary scientists. Surprised by tantalizing evidence of activity, scientists believe Enceladus may be the primary source of material for one of Saturn’s rings. Data from Titan has shown that water ice in the outer […]