A “catastrophic” event destroyed the atmosphere of Mars four billion years ago, according to scientists.
An analysis of data returned by the Curiosity rover, which landed on the planet a year ago, suggests there was a major upheaval which could have been caused by volcanic eruptions or a massive collision which stripped away the atmosphere.
Not content with simply being the man-made object to travel farthest from Earth, NASA’s Voyager 1 spacecraft recently entered a bizarre new region at the solar system’s edge that has physicists baffled. Their theories don’t predict anything like it.
The Voyager probes’ exits of the realm of our sun’s influence continue to be fascinating to watch. There’s no telling what we’ll be able to learn from all of this. Maybe we’ll make some kind of breakthrough that will give humanity hope again.
Here’s a beautiful assemblage of high-resolution imagery from NASA:
Astronomers at NASA and Pennsylvania State University have used NASA’s Swift satellite to create the most detailed ultraviolet light surveys ever of the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds, the two closest major galaxies. […] To produce the 160-megapixel LMC mosaic, Swift’s UVOT acquired 2,200 snapshots for a cumulative exposure of 5.4 days. The 57-megapixel SMC image comprises 656 individual images with a total exposure of 1.8 days.
Check out the source link for more context and a ton of images.
We are so exceedingly tiny, and our silly problems are tinier still.
Among the data coming back from NASA’s MESSENGER probe and its study of the planet Mercury is the (somewhat) shocking revelation that there are pockets of ice on one of the hottest surfaces in our solar system. The probe has photographed many craters which have sides that are never exposed to the sun–and since Mercury has no atmosphere, those shadowed areas are at incredibly low temperatures given the surrounding surface’s 750° F hellscape.
It gives me hope to know that even in the hottest of hells, something cool can survive.