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Latest by G. Torbet

An astronaut aboard the space shuttle Atlantis captured this image of the Hubble Space Telescope on May 19, 2009.

NASA is looking for ideas on how to boost the Hubble Space Telescope

NASA is inviting private companies to submit their proposals for boosting the telescope as a demonstration of how to perform similar operations on satellites.
In this image, the gold-plated Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) Instrument shines after being installed inside the Perseverance rover.

Perseverance rover experiment produces record amount of oxygen on Mars

Inside the belly of the Perseverance rover, currently exploring Mars's Jezero Crater, is a small box with a big job: making oxygen.
This illustration shows the SWOT spacecraft with its antenna mast and solar arrays fully deployed.

See NASA’s newest Earth-monitoring satellite unfurl in space

This month, NASA launched a new satellite which has now unfurled in space ready to begin science operations, with a video showing the unfolding process.
This festive NASA Hubble Space Telescope image resembles a holiday wreath made of sparkling lights. The bright southern hemisphere star RS Puppis, at the center of the image, is swaddled in a gossamer cocoon of reflective dust illuminated by the glittering star. The super star is ten times more massive than our Sun and 200 times larger.

Listen to the festive sounds of space with new NASA sonification

NASA has released a new festive sonification based on an image taken by the Hubble Space Telescope showing the enormous star RS Puppis.
The HiRISE camera aboard NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured these images of sand dunes covered by frost just after winter solstice. The frost here is a mixture of carbon dioxide (dry) ice and water ice and will disappear in a few months when spring arrives.

See the otherworldly sights of Mars in the wintertime

While the northern hemisphere of Earth experiences the winter solstice this week, there are also snowy winter scenes to be found on Mars.
A Russian Soyuz spacecraft docked at the space station.

NASA and Roscosmos still investigating cause of space station leak

Space agencies are investigating the cause of a leak on the space station and are working on a plan to safely return three crew members to Earth.
This image is dominated by NGC 7469, a luminous, face-on spiral galaxy approximately 90 000 light-years in diameter that lies roughly 220 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Pegasus. Its companion galaxy IC 5283 is partly visible in the lower left portion of this image.

James Webb image shows the bright glowing heart of a galaxy

Astronomers recently shared a stunning new image of space from the James Webb Space Telescope, showing a galaxy with an unusually bright heart.
A portion of the open cluster NGC 6530 appears as a roiling wall of smoke studded with stars in this image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. NGC 6530 is a collection of several thousand stars lying around 4,350 light-years from Earth in the constellation Sagittarius.

See a close-up of the stunning Lagoon Nebula in new Hubble image

Hubble has imaged a cluster of thousands of stars shrouded in dust, which makes up a small part of the huge and beautiful Lagoon Nebula.
A swath of sky measuring 2% of the area covered by the full moon was imaged with Webb’s Near-Infrared Camera (NIRCam) in eight filters, and with Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) and Wide-Field Camera 3 (WFC3) in three filters that together span the 0.25 to 5 micron wavelength range. This image represents a portion of the full PEARLS field, which will be about four times larger.

James Webb survey image shows a field of shining galaxies

Researchers from a Webb survey called PEARLS recently released their first results showing an area of the sky called the North Ecliptic Pole.
NASA’s Juno mission captured this infrared view of Jupiter’s volcanic moon Io on July 5, 2022, when the spacecraft was about 50,000 miles (80,000 kilometers) away. This infrared image was derived from data collected by the Jovian Infrared Auroral Mapper (JIRAM) instrument aboard Juno. In this image, the brighter the color the higher the temperature recorded by JIRAM.

NASA’s Juno spacecraft to investigate Jupiter’s volcanic moon Io

Juno will begin an investigation of the intriguing volcanic moon Io, performing a series of nine flybys.
This sparkling new image depicts a small section of the Carina Nebula, one of the NASA Hubble Space Telescope’s most-imaged objects. The Carina Nebula, NGC 3372, is an enormous cloud of gas and dust home to several massive and bright stars, including at least a dozen that are 50 to 100 times the mass of our Sun.

See Hubble’s take on the famous and beautiful Carina Nebula

The Hubble Space Telescope recently captured a scene made famous by its sibling, the James Webb Space Telescope.
In this illustration super-Earth Kepler-138 d is in the foreground. To the left, the planet Kepler-138 c, and in the background the planet Kepler 138 b, seen in silhouette transiting its central star. Kepler 138 is a red dwarf star located 218 light-years away. The low density of Kepler-138 c and Kepler-138 d — which are nearly identical in size — means that they must be composed largely of water.

Hubble and Spitzer spot two far-off watery worlds

Hubble and Spitzer have identified two planets which seem to be water worlds, with oceans which are 500 times deeper than those on Earth.
nasa swot launch

NASA launches fresh water observation satellite

NASA has launched its first mission to survey fresh water systems from a global perspective.
The location where NASA’s Perseverance will begin depositing its first cache of samples is shown in this image taken by the Mars rover on Dec. 14, 2022, the 646th Martian day, or sol, of the mission.

The Perseverance rover is building a sample cache on Mars

Perseverance will soon begin stashing Martian sample tubes in a depot which will eventually hold 10 tubes deposited over around one month.
The Soyuz MS-22 crew ship is pictured docked to the Rassvet module. In the background, the Prichal docking module is attached to the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module.

Coolant leak in Soyuz docked to ISS is causing temperatures to rise

A leak in a Soyuz craft docked to the International Space Station is causing temperatures to rise but is not putting the crew in danger, according to Roscosmos.
AstroRad Vest

How will NASA keep Mars astronauts safe from cosmic radiation? Here’s the plan

Space is full of dangerous cosmic radiation, and in order to send astronauts to Mars, we'll need to protect them from it. Here's how.
This image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope captures a small portion of the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC). The SMC is a dwarf galaxy and one of the Milky Way’s nearest neighbors, lying only about 200,000 light-years from Earth. It makes a pair with the Large Magellanic Cloud, and both objects are best seen from the Southern Hemisphere, but are visible from some northern latitudes as well.

Our galactic companion, the Small Magellanic Cloud, sparkles in Hubble image

This week's Hubble image shows the Small Magellanic Cloud, or SMC, which is a satellite galaxy to our Milky Way.
An artist’s impression of the planet Janssen (orange circle), which orbits its star so closely that its entire surface is a lava ocean that reaches temperatures of around 2,000 degrees Celsius.

How the ‘hell planet’ covered in lava oceans got so close to its star

Exoplanet 55 Cancri e, known as the hell planet, reaches temperatures of 3,600 degrees Fahrenheit. Now researchers have a new theory for how it got so hot.
This artist's impression shows a kilonova produced by two colliding neutron stars. While studying the aftermath of a long gamma-ray burst (GRB), two independent teams of astronomers using a host of telescopes in space and on Earth, including the Gemini North telescope on Hawai‘i and the Gemini South telescope in Chile, have uncovered the unexpected hallmarks of a kilonova, the colossal explosion triggered by colliding neutron stars.

Colliding neutron stars create ‘paradigm-shifting’ colossal flash

A new discovery is challenging what we know about the creation of some of the brightest flashes in the universe, called Gamma-Ray Bursts,
At 12:40 p.m. EST, Dec. 11, 2022, NASA’s Orion spacecraft for the Artemis I mission splashed down in the Pacific Ocean after a 25.5 day mission to the Moon. Orion will be recovered by NASA’s Landing and Recovery team, U.S. Navy and Department of Defense partners aboard the USS Portland ship.

NASA’s Orion spacecraft splashes down after journey around moon

NASA's Orion spacecraft has splashed down in the Pacific Ocean, marking the end of the Artemis I mission around the moon.
This artist's illustration shows the location and size of a hypothetical cloud of dust surrounding our solar system. Astronomers searched through 200,000 images and made tens of thousands of measurements from Hubble Space Telescope to discover a residual background glow in the sky.

Hubble reveals glow of ‘ghostly’ light around our solar system

Researchers using data from the Hubble Space Telescope have made a strange discovery: there's a ghostly light surrounding our solar system.
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How to watch SpaceX launch a private lunar lander tonight

Overnight tonight, SpaceX will launch a Falcon 9 rocket starting a private Japanese lander on a journey to the moon.
This image taken by the James Webb Space Telescope highlights the region of study by the JWST Advanced Deep Extragalactic Survey (JADES). This area is in and around the Hubble Space Telescope’s Ultra Deep Field. Scientists used Webb’s NIRCam instrument to observe the field in nine different infrared wavelength ranges. From these images, the team searched for faint galaxies that are visible in the infrared but whose spectra abruptly cut off at a critical wavelength. They conducted additional observations (not shown here) with Webb’s NIRSpec instrument to measure each galaxy’s redshift and reveal the properties of the gas and stars in these galaxies. In this image blue represents light at 1.15 microns (115W), green is 2.0 microns (200W), and red is 4.44 microns (444W)

James Webb uses spectroscopy to identify earliest galaxies to date

New research provides confirmation that the James Webb Space Telescope has identified some of the oldest galaxies yet, estimated to be 13.4 billion years old.
NASA's Perseverance Mars rover snagged two samples of regolith – broken rock and dust – on Dec. 2 and 6, 2022. This set of images, taken by the rover's left navigation camera, shows Perseverance's robotic arm over the two holes left after the samples were collected.

Perseverance rover collects its first sample of Martian dirt

NASA's Perseverance rover, currently exploring Mars's Jezero Crater, has collected its first sample of dirt from the Martian surface.
The engines on Orion’s service module are prominently featured in this image from flight day 22 of the Artemis I mission. The largest is the orbital maneuvering system engine, surrounded by eight smaller auxiliary thrusters.

Orion prepares to return to Earth ahead of splashdown tomorrow

NASA's Orion spacecraft is on its way home from its orbit of the moon and is due to splash down in the Pacific Ocean tomorrow, Sunday, December 11.
Illustration of China’s Tiangong space station.

China’s Tiangong space station has a new three-person crew

The Shenzhou 14 crew landed in the Gobi Desert on Saturday, December 4, leaving behind the Shenzhou 15 crew who will now operate the station.
Over 100 meteors are recorded in this composite image taken during the peak of the Geminid meteor shower in 2014.

How to watch the Geminids Meteor shower this month

One of the great meteor showers of the year, the Geminids, will be visible in December. Here's how to catch this beautiful sight.
A camera mounted on one of Orion’s four solar arrays captured this image of the Moon on flight day 17 of the 25.5-day Artemis I mission from a distance of more than 222,000 miles from Earth. Orion has exited the distant lunar orbit and is heading for a Dec. 11 splashdown in the Pacific Ocean.

Orion spacecraft reenters moon’s gravity on its way home

NASA's Orion spacecraft has reentered the area of the moon's gravity, called the lunar sphere of influence, on its way back to Earth.
By combining images of the iconic Pillars of Creation from two cameras aboard the NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope, the Universe has been framed in its infrared glory. Webb’s near-infrared image was fused with its mid-infrared image, setting this star-forming region ablaze with new details.

See Webb’s most beautiful image yet of the Pillars of Creation

Two of James Webb's images of the Pillars of Creation have been combined into one, showing a gorgeous new view of the famous structure.
Finder chart for Mars on 8 December.

How to see Mars at its brightest at opposition this week

Stargazers in the northern hemisphere are in for a treat as Mars has reached its closest point to Earth, giving the best view of the Red Planet until the 2030s.
Against a backdrop littered with tiny pinpricks of light glint a few, brighter stars. This whole collection is NGC 1858, an open star cluster in the northwest region of the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy of our Milky Way that boasts an abundance of star-forming regions. NGC 1858 is estimated to be around 10 million years old.clock

Hubble captures an open star cluster in a nearby satellite galaxy

The Hubble Space Telescope recently captured an image of a beautiful star cluster called NGC 1858, located in an area full of star-forming regions.
NASA’s uncrewed Orion spacecraft reached a maximum distance of nearly 270,000 miles from Earth during the Artemis I flight test before beginning its journey back toward Earth. Orion captured imagery of the Earth and Moon together from its distant lunar orbit, including this image on Nov. 28, 2022, taken from camera on one of the spacecraft’s solar array wings.

How to watch Orion’s return flyby of the moon on Monday

Before NASA's Orion spacecraft returns to Earth, it has to make a return flyby of the moon, scheduled for Monday, December 5.
Near-infrared Images of Saturn’s moon Titan, as seen by JWST on November 4, 2022 (left), followed by Keck Observatory’s NIRC2 instrument paired with adaptive optics on November 6, 2022 (middle) and November 7, 2022 (right).

James Webb and Keck Observatory see clouds on Saturn’s moon Titan

Researchers using James Webb the Keck Observatory have teamed up to study Saturn's largest moon, Titan, and observe the way that clouds move around it.
Astronaut Josh Cassada is pictured during a spacewalk on Nov. 15, 2022, to ready the space station for future rollout solar array installation work.

Two spacewalkers are installing a new solar array on the ISS today

Two NASA astronauts are currently on a spacewalk, working outside the International Space Station to install a new solar array.