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In the News – Year 2011

WISE Presents a Cosmic Wreath
WISE Presents a Cosmic Wreath
12.22.11 – Sprigs of holly, a big red bow and silver bells appear to dress up this cosmic star-forming wreath, captured by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey…
RXTE Detects "Hearbeat" of Smallest Black Hole Candidate
RXTE Detects “Heartbeat” of Smallest Black Hole Candidate
12.21.11 – An international team of astronomers has identified a candidate for the smallest-known black hole using data from RXTE.
Star Explosion Leaves Behind a Rose
Star Explosion Leaves Behind a Rose
12.09.11 – What appears to be a giant red rose in space is all that's left of a star that exploded long ago.
Space Weather Workshop
Space Weather Workshop
12.06.11 – Five scientists speaking at a workshop at the 2011 Fall AGU meeting in San Francisco on Tuesday, December 6 at 10 AM PST will discuss the complex – and relatively new – research area of space weather.
Swift Finds a Gamma-Ray Burst With a Dual Personality
Swift Finds a Gamma-Ray Burst With a Dual Personality
11.30.11 – A peculiar cosmic explosion seen by the Swift observatory on Christmas Day 2010 was either a novel type of supernova located billions of light-years away or an unusual collision much closer to home.
NASA's Swift Catches Asteroid Flyby
NASA's Swift Catches Asteroid Flyby
11.10.11 – As asteroid 2005 YU55 swept past Earth in the early morning hours of Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2011, Swift monitored the fast-moving space rock.
Stories of Missons Past: Early Explorers
Stories of Missions Past: Early Explorers
10.26.11 – Not only was Explorer 1 the first US satellite launched into space, it was the first in a long line of scientific workhorses that revolutionized our…
'Pacman' Nebula Gets Some Teeth
‘Pacman’ Nebula Gets Some Teeth
10.26.11 – When viewed in infrared light by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, the “Pacman” nebula looks hungrier than usual.
NASA Telescopes Help Solve Ancient Supernova Mystery
NASA Telescopes Help Solve Ancient Supernova Mystery
10.24.11 – A mystery that began nearly 2,000 years ago, when Chinese astronomers witnessed what would turn out to be an exploding star in the sky, has been…
Nikolaos Paschalidis: Miniaturized Details and the Big Picture
Nikolaos Paschalidis: Miniaturized Details and the Big Picture
10.04.11 – A profile of Nikolaos Paschalidis, who is in charge of coordinating science and technology advancement efforts of NASA Goddard's Heliophysics division. He builds tiny chips for spacecraft, and thinks big about the future.
NASA Space Telescope Finds Fewer Asteroids Near Earth
NASA Space Telescope Finds Fewer Asteroids Near Earth
09.29.11 – New observations by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, show there are significantly fewer near-Earth asteroids in the mid-size range than previously thought.
NASA to Host News Conference on Asteroid Findings
NASA to Host News Conference on Asteroid Findings
09.26.11 – NASA will hold a news conference at 1 p.m. EDT (10 a.m. PDT) on Thurs., Sept. 29, to reveal near-Earth asteroid findings and implications for future research.
Aurora From ISS Orbit
Aurora From ISS Orbit
09.22.11 – This view of the aurora from Earth orbit was taken from the International Space Station as it crossed over the southern Indian Ocean on September 17, 2011.
NASA's WISE Mission Captures Black Hole's Wildly Flaring Jet
NASA's WISE Mission Captures Black Hole's Flaring Jet
09.20.11 – Astronomers using NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) have captured rare data of a flaring black hole, revealing new details about…
Origin of Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid Remains a Mystery
Origin of Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid Remains a Mystery
09.19.11 – The family of asteroids some believed was responsible for the demise of the dinosaurs is not likely the culprit according to new observations.
Researchers Detail How a Distant Black Hole Devoured A Star
How A Distant Black Hole Devoured A Star
08.24.11 – Two studies in the Aug. 25 issue of Nature provide new insights into a cosmic accident that has been streaming X-rays toward Earth.
NASA Event to Discuss Black Holes and Extreme Objects
NASA Event to Discuss Black Holes and Extreme Objects
08.23.11 – NASA will hold a news conference at 1 p.m. EDT (10 a.m. PDT) on Thurs., Sept. 29, to reveal near-Earth asteroid findings and implications for future research.
NASA's Wise Mission Discovers Coolest Class of Stars
NASA’S Wise Mission Discovers Coolest Class of Stars
08.23.11 – Scientists using data from NASA’s WISE have discovered the coldest class of star-like bodies, with temperatures as cool as the human body.
NASA's WISE Finds Earth's First Trojan Asteroid
NASA’s WISE Finds Earth’s First Trojan Asteroid
07.27.11 – Astronomers studying observations taken by WISE discovered the first known Trojan asteroid orbiting the sun along with Earth.
Two NASA Probes Tackle New Mission: Studying the Moon
07.19.11 – A NASA led team of scientists and engineers has repositioned two small probes from Earth's orbit where they studied space weather to begin orbiting the moon to study its interior and surface composition.
Space shuttle Atlantis, now docked to the ISS for the last resupply mission of NASA's 30-year shuttle program, was witness to beautiful green curtains of aurora over the Southern hemisphere.
STS-135 Sees Aurora Australis
07.18.11 – Astronauts from STS-135 and crew of the ISS witness a beautiful aurora over the southern hemisphere, a space-based treat for the final mission of NASA's 30-year shuttle program.
Comet Hartley 2 Leaves a Bumpy Trail
Comet Hartley 2 Leaves a Bumpy Trail
07.14.11 – Comet Hartley 2 is a little bit like Hansel and Gretel, leaving behind a trail of ice crumbs as it circles the sun.
In Poland, noctilucent clouds season is the time of young stork births.
Noctilucent Cloud Season Begins
07.06.11 – Noctilucent clouds are back for 2011 and continue spreading to ever lower latitudes.
ARTEMIS Spacecraft Prepare for Lunar Orbit
ARTEMIS Spacecraft Prepare for Lunar Orbit
06.23.11 – It took one and a half years, over 90 orbit maneuvers, many gravitational boosts and little fuel to move two spacecraft from their orbits around Earth to their new home around the moon.
NASA's Swift Sees Star Gobbled Up by Black Hole
NASA’s Swift Sees Star Gobbled Up by Black Hole
06.17.11 – Swift discovered a series of powerful X-ray blasts coming from a source in the constellation Draco.
New Insights On How Solar Minimums Affect Earth
New Insights On How Solar Minimums Affect Earth
06.14.11 – In 2008, the sun experienced its longest and weakest solar minimum in the modern age.
Nearby Galaxy Boasts Two Monster Black Holes, Both Active
Nearby Galaxy Boasts Two Monster Black Holes
06.10.11 – NASA satellites have found a second super-sized black hole at the heart of an unusual nearby galaxy already known to be sporting one.
A Night with the Stars...in a Confrence Room
A Night with the Stars…in a Conference Room
05.31.11 – Astronomers no longer peer through telescopes up at the night sky. The wonders of the universe can now be accessed right from a laptop.
NASA's Swift Finds Most Distant Gamma-ray Burst Yet
Swift Finds Most Distant Gamma-ray Burst Yet
05.27.11 – After two years of painstaking analysis, astronomers say a stellar blast observed by Swift was the farthest explosion yet identified.
NASA's WISE Mission Offers a Taste of Galaxies to Come
NASA’s WISE Mission Offers a Taste of Galaxies to Come
05.25.11 – An assorted mix of colorful galaxies is being released today by NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer mission, or WISE. The nine galaxies are a taste of what’s to come.
NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer Helps Confirm Nature of Dark Energy
NASA Telescope Helps Confirm Nature of Dark Energy
05.19.11 – A five-year survey of 200,000 galaxies, stretching back seven billion years in cosmic time, has led to one of the best independent confirmations that dark energy is driving our universe apart at accelerating speeds.
NASA's Swift and Hubble Probe Asteroid Collision Debris
Swift and Hubble Probe Asteroid Collision Debris
04.28.11 – On Dec. 11, 2010,asteroid Scheila flared twice as bright as expected. Hubble and Swift captured the aftermath of this deep space collision.
Ultraviolet Spotlight on Plump Stars in Tiny Galaxies
Ultraviolet Spotlight on Plump Stars in Tiny Galaxies
04.21.11 – Astronomers using NASA’s Galaxy Evolution Explorer may be closer to knowing why some of the most massive stellar explosions ever observed occur in the tiniest of galaxies.
Clouds, Clouds, Burning Bright
Clouds, Clouds, Burning Bright
04.18.11 – The NASA mission Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere has shown that night-shining ‘noctilucent’ cloud formation is changing year to year, showing a link between northern and southern weather systems some 13000 miles apart.
WISE Delivers Millions of Galaxies, Stars, Asteroids
WISE Delivers Millions of Galaxies, Stars, Asteroids
04.14.11 – Astronomers across the globe can now sift through hundreds of millions of galaxies, stars and asteroids collected in the first bundle of data from NASA's WISE mission.
NASA Telescope Ferrets Out Planet-Huting Targets
NASA Telescope Ferrets Out Planet-Hunting Targets
04.10.11 – Astronomers have come up with a new way of identifying close, faint stars with NASA’s Galaxy Evolution Explorer satellite.
WISE Mission Spots 'Horseshoe' Asteroid
WISE Mission Spots 'Horseshoe' Asteroid
04.08.11 – Astronomers using data from NASA's WISE mission have found an asteroid that appears to slowly trace out a horseshoe shape in space, as seen from Earth.
Study Confirms Engine of Short Gamma-Ray Bursts
Study Confirms Engine of Short Gamma-Ray Bursts
04.07.11 – A new supercomputer simulation gives the most detailed view of the forces driving some of the universe's most energetic explosions.
NASA Telescopes Join Forces to Observe Unprecedented Explosion
NASA Telescopes Observe Unprecedented Explosion
04.07.11 – Usually, gamma-ray bursts last hours, marking the destruction of a massive star, but three telescopes have now zoomed in on one lasting for days.
The Art of Making Stars
The Art of Making Stars
04.01.11 – A swirling palette of star-forming clouds can be seen in this picturesque image from WISE.
Suzaku Shows Clearest Picture Yet of Perseus Galaxy Cluster
Clearest Picture Yet of Perseus Cluster
03.24.11 – X-ray observations made by Suzaku provide the clearest picture to date of the size, mass and chemical content of a nearby cluster of galaxies.
Speed Demon Creates a Shock
Speed Demon Creates a Shock
03.10.11 – WISE has captured a star zipping through space like a race car driver.
‘Elephant Trunks’ in Space
‘Elephant Trunks’ in Space
03.04.11 – A new image from NASA's WISE mission shows a zoo of “elephant trunks” herded together in a star-forming region.
Can WISE Find the Hypothetical ‘Tyche’?
Can WISE Find the Hypothetical ‘Tyche’?
02.18.11 – In November 2010, the scientific journal Icarus published a paper by astrophysicists John Matese and Daniel Whitmire, who proposed the existence of a binary companion to our sun, larger than Jupiter.
Catching Space Weather in the Act
Catching Space Weather in the Act
02.17.11 – Special cameras aboard the Interstellar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, spacecraft have snapped the first images of space weather as it happens.
NASA's NEOWISE Completes Scan for Asteroids and Comets
NASA’s NEOWISE Completes Scan for Asteroids and Comets
02.01.11 – NASA’s NEOWISE mission has completed its survey of small bodies, asteroids and comets, in our solar system.
Tracking the Origins of Speedy Space Particles
Tracking the Origins of Speedy Space Particles
01.31.11 – THEMIS helped track the origin of energetic particles in a kind of space weather called a substorm — these speedy electrons gain energy from changing magnetic fields far from the origin of the event that causes them.
Runaway Star Plows Through Space
Runaway Star Plows Through Space
01.24.11 – Can you tell which way the central, bright blue star is traveling in this new image from WISE?
Swift Survey Finds 'Missing' Active Galaxies
Swift Survey Finds 'Missing' Active Galaxies
01.20.11 – An international team of scientists using data from NASA's Swift satellite confirms the existence of a largely unseen population of black-hole-powered galaxies.
Partner Galaxies Wildly Different in New WISE IMAGE
Partner Galaxies Wildly Different in New WISE IMAGE
01.13.11 – NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer has captured a new view of two companion galaxies.
NASA Satellites Find High-Energy Suprises in 'Constant' Crab Nebula
High-Energy Surprises in ‘Constant’ Crab Nebula
01.12.11 – The Crab Nebula was once thought to be the steadiest high-energy source in the sky. Not so, according to new data from NASA satellites.
In Distant Galaxies, New Clues to Century-Old Molecule Mystery
In Distant Galaxies, New Clues to Century-Old Molecule Mystery
01.10.11 – a team of NASA and European scientists recorded the “fingerprints” of mystery molecules - thought to be large organic compounds - in two distant galaxies, Andromeda and the Triangulum.