News That Matters

Tag: NASA

NASA announces record-breaking stay on space station for astronaut Christina Koch

NASA announces record-breaking stay on space station for astronaut Christina Koch

Science
April 17 (UPI) -- Astronaut Christina Koch will break the record for longest spaceflight by a female, according to NASA. The space agency on Wednesday announced that Koch will remain aboard  the International Space Station until February 2020. Koch's extended stay will allow her to break the current record of 288 days, set in 2017 by NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson. Koch's stay on ISS will be only slightly shorter than the all-time NASA record for longest spaceflight. In 2016, NASA astronaut Scott Kelly returned to Earth after 340 days in space. NASA astronaut Andrew Morgan, who is scheduled to join Koch on the space station in July, is also set for an extended stay. The prolonged spaceflights for Koch and Morgan will help scientists better understand the effects of extended exposure t...
Video: NASA tests helicopter for use on Mars

Video: NASA tests helicopter for use on Mars

Science
March 29 (UPI) -- "For the first time, we are going to fly a helicopter on another world with the Mars Helicopter," Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced earlier this month. This week, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory released new video of Mars Helicopter test flights. During the test flights, the helicopter successfully hovered 2 inches, proving its flight readiness for the agency's Mars 2020 rover mission. "This recent test of the flight model was the real deal," Mimi Aung, Mars Helicopter project manager at JPL, said in a news release. "This is our helicopter bound for Mars. We needed to see that it worked as advertised." Flying a helicopter on Earth is an everyday occurrence, but Mars' thin atmosphere presents unique challenges. For the test flights, scientists replicated the Mart...
NASA detects atomic-force meteor explosion above the Bering Sea

NASA detects atomic-force meteor explosion above the Bering Sea

Science
March 19 (UPI) -- According to NASA, a meteor exploded in Earth's atmosphere in December. The fireball exploded with a force 10 times that of the energy released by the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima -- the equivalent of 380 million pounds of TNT -- making it the second largest of its kind in the last 30 years. Only the Chelyabinsk meteor that exploded over southwest Russia six years ago, shattering the windows of local buildings, was larger. The Chelyabinsk blast was seen and heard by hundreds of people. Taxi cab dash cams recorded its approach. Because the latest explosion occurred over such a remote area -- Russia's Kamchatka peninsula -- the blast went unnoticed by the public. Lindley Johnson, planetary defense officer at NASA, told BBC News such a large explosion is only expected...
NASA issues warning about space herpes

NASA issues warning about space herpes

Technology
By Alexander J Martin, technology reporter NASA has issued a warning about space herpes after a study found the virus was reactivating in crew aboard Space Shuttle and International Space Station missions.According to the agency, while only a small proportion of the astronauts develop symptoms as a result of the dormant virus awakening, it could spell danger for longer spaceflight missions - for instance to Mars. "NASA astronauts endure weeks or even months exposed to microgravity and cosmic radiation - not to mention the extreme G forces of take-off and re-entry," said Dr Satish Mehta."This physical challenge is compounded by more familiar stressors like social separation, confinement and an altered sleep-wake cycle," added Dr Mehta, senior author of the...
NASA spots enormous meteor explosion

NASA spots enormous meteor explosion

Technology
A meteor was the cause of an enormous explosion in the atmosphere last year, NASA has announced.The blast was 10 times more powerful than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. It was the second-largest such explosion in the last century, just behind the meteor which exploded over the Russian region of Chelyabinsk in 2013.The most recent meteor exploded over the Bering Sea, also near Russia.It was just 25.6km (16 miles) above the planet's surface and hurtling down at a steep angle of seven degrees when the friction of the atmosphere caused it to explode. The explosion was detected by US military satellites last year, and subsequently referred to NASA.According to NASA's planetary defence officer Lindley Johnson, the fireball exploded near to a common flight route, and so researchers...