Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Volcanic Sunset Alert

Source - Space Weather News for June 30, 2009: http://spaceweather.com

VOLCANIC SUNSETS: The Russian volcano that erupted directly beneath the International Space Station on June 12th is now causing beautiful lavender sunsets across parts of the northern USA and Europe. A plume of ash and sulfur dioxide from the Sarychev Peak eruption is circulating through the stratosphere, and when parts of the plume pass over an area at sunset, the sky fills with delicate white ripples, sometimes-colorful streamers, and a telltale hue of purple. Check today's edition for observing tips and a photo gallery.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Are We Alone for 06/29/09 - Humans in Space... ace... ace

Image for Are We Alone weekly radio show
Are We Alone - Humans in Space... ace... ace
ENCORE When the economy’s down, will humans still be going up – into space, that is? We investigate the future of human spaceflight at the International Astronautical Congress in Glasgow, Scotland and find out whether sending Homo sapiens to the Moon and Mars is still a good idea. Also, the chief of Virgin Galactic is happy to send you into space on a private flight – but it may max out your credit card.

Plus, an Apollo astronaut’s view from orbit… dining with South Korea’s first astronaut… and one of Britain’s great science fiction authors on how space science fuels the imagination.

Guests: You can listen to this and other episodes at http://radio.seti.org/, and be sure to check out Are We A Blog?, the companion blog to the radio show.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Friday, June 26, 2009

Space Station Room With a View

Source - NASA Science News for June 26, 2009

Astronauts are looking forward to an unprecedented view of the cosmos when the largest window ever built for space is installed on the International Space Station.

FULL STORY at

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/26jun_cupola.htm?list894285

Volcanic Eruption Photographed from Space

Source - Space Weather News for June 26, 2009: http://spaceweather.com

VOLCANIC VISTAS: On June 12th, astronauts onboard the International Space Station watched in amazement as Russia's Sarychev Peak volcano erupted directly beneath their spacecraft. The rare photo they took is a must-see. An enormous sulfur dioxide plume from the eruption is now circumnavigating the globe at northern latitudes, producing spectacular sunsets for international air travelers. Today's edition of http://spaceweather.com features 3D photos of the eruption from space, satellite movies of the sulfur dioxide plume, and a Mars-like view of the volcanic cloud over the Canadian Arctic.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Live Video of Lunar Flyby

Source - Space Weather News for June 22, 2009: http://spaceweather.com

LUNAR FLYBY: Tomorrow morning, NASA's LCROSS (Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite) spacecraft will fly by the Moon and send pictures back to Earth from only 9000 km above the lunar surface. The purpose of the maneuver is to put LCROSS in an elongated Earth orbit and position it for impact at the lunar south pole later this year. Live video streaming of the flyby begins at approximately 5:20 AM PDT on Tuesday, June 23, 2009. Visit http://spaceweather.com for links and updates.

NEW SUNSPOTS: Since 2007, it has been unusual to see even a single spot on the sun. Today there are two. A pair of new-cycle sunspots is emerging in the sun's southern hemisphere. This is a good opportunity for readers with solar telescopes to witness sunspot genesis in action.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Are We Alone for 06/22/09 - What Makes Us Human Part II: Adaptability

Image for Are We Alone weekly radio show
Are We Alone - What Makes Us Human Part II: Adaptability
Are humans unique or do we just do some things a little better than other species? In the second of our two-part series – how our ability to adapt has shaped our evolution.
Find out how throwing a burger on the grill has transformed our species… the 1% genetic difference that separate us from chimps… why we’re poorly adapted and stressed out … and why human evolution is not only on the move, but picking up the pace.
Guests: You can listen to this and other episodes at http://radio.seti.org/, and be sure to check out Are We A Blog?, the companion blog to the radio show.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Satellites Guide Relief to Earthquake Victims

Source - NASA Science News for June 19, 2009

In the aftermath of a recent, deadly earthquake, the NASA-led SERVIR program orchestrated use of satellite data to show Central American disaster officials where help was needed most.

FULL STORY at

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/18jun_servir.htm?list894285

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Electric-blue Clouds Sweep Across Europe

Source - Space Weather News for June 17, 2009: http://spaceweather.com

NIGHT-SHINING CLOUDS: On June 16th, a remarkably intense display of electric-blue noctilucent clouds (NLCs) swept across Europe. Sightings were made in Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Poland and the British Isles. These mysterious clouds are known to flourish during years of solar minimum--and 2009 is such a year. This means more NLCs may be in the offing, not only over Europe but also North America and elsewhere. Check http://spaceweather.com for images, movies, and observing tips.

THE MYSTERY OF THE MISSING SUNSPOTS: The sun is in the pits of the deepest solar minimum in nearly a century. Where have all the sunspots gone? Scientists studying a jet stream deep inside the sun may have found the answer. Find the full story at http://spaceweather.com.

Mystery of the Missing Sunspots, Solved?

Source - NASA Science News for June 17, 2009

Where have all the sunspots gone? Scientists studying a jet stream deep inside the sun may have found the answer.

FULL STORY at

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/17jun_jetstream.htm?list894285

Check out our RSS feed at http://science.nasa.gov/rss.xml

Monday, June 15, 2009

Running Out of This World

Source - NASA Science News for June 15, 2009

With NASA poised to launch the world's most famous treadmill (COLBERT) to the International Space Station, an astronaut describes what it's like to run in space where sweat floats and there is no gravity to hold your feet to the ground.
FULL STORY at

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/15jun_running.htm?list894285

Check out our RSS feed at http://science.nasa.gov/rss.xml

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Are We Alone for 06/15/09 - What Makes Us Human Part I: Others

Image for Are We Alone weekly radio show
Are We Alone - What Makes Us Human Part I: Others
Are humans unique or do we just do some things a little better than other species? In the first of our two-part series on the nature of humanity: how the influence of others has shaped our evolution.

Find out how baby talk gave root to human language and why social isolation can make us sick. Plus, the joke’s on us – new research says we’re not the only laughing species: meet your giggling gorilla cousins.

And, what a writer’s visit to a chimp retirement center revealed about human discomfort with our animal ancestry. You can listen to this and other episodes at http://radio.seti.org/, and be sure to check out Are We A Blog?, the companion blog to the radio show.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Japanese Spacecraft Set to Hit the Moon

Source - Space Weather News for June 10, 2009
http://spaceweather.com

IMPACT ALERT: Japan's Kaguya will crash into the Moon on Wednesday, June 10th, around 1830 UT. The timing favors observers in Asia and Australia, who might be able to see a flash of light or a plume of debris rising from the Moon's southeastern limb. The spacecraft masses 2,600 kg and it will slam into the lunar surface at 6,000 km/hr. No one knows, however, how bright the flash might be or whether it will be visible even through large telescopes. Images of the crash, if any are captured, will be posted on http://spaceweather.com .

Return of the Mars Hoax

Source - NASA Science News for June 9, 2009

There's an email going around claiming that Mars will look as big as a full Moon on August 27th. Could this possibly be true? Find out in today's story from Science@NASA:

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/09jun_marshoax.htm?list894285

Check out our RSS feed at http://science.nasa.gov/rss.xml

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Strange 'Squid-like' Lightning Spotted over France

Source - Space Weather News for June 8, 2009
http://spaceweather.com

STRANGE LIGHTNING: Over the weekend, an atmospheric scientist in Europe photographed something that resembled a giant luminous squid floating over a thundercloud in France. It was a strange form of lightning known as a "sprite." His high-resolution images are featured on today's edition of http://spaceweather.com along with observing tips for anyone who would like to see and photograph these fantastic bolts during the upcoming thunderstorm season.

Are We Alone for 06/08/09 - Bodies in Motion

Image for Are We Alone weekly radio show
Are We Alone - Bodies in Motion
Feel the need for speed? Well, you’ll need an extra helping of speed if you plan to leave the Earth and explore other parts of the solar system. On the 40th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing, and as part of our series for the International Year of Astronomy: what it’s like to travel in a rocket (why you won’t feel any motion), and NASA’s plans for returning to the moon.
Also, life in an accelerating universe and why a spacecraft’s quirky trajectory may mean that the laws of motion need tweaking. And we revisit Stanley Kubrick’s epic film 2001: A Space Odyssey
Plus, Seth gets around … and around … when he takes a spin in a gravitational centrifuge.

Guests:
  • John Keller – Deputy project scientist for NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter
  • Robert Kirschner – Astronomer at Harvard University
  • Jaime Mateus – Graduate student at M.I.T.’s Manned Vehicle Laboratory
  • Mark Frank – Astrodynamicist in California
  • Keir Dullea and Gary Lockwood – Stars of the 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey
You can listen to this and other episodes at http://radio.seti.org/, and be sure to check out Are We A Blog?, the companion blog to the radio show.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Arietid Meteor Shower this Weekend

Source - Space Weather News for June 5, 2009: http://spaceweather.com

DAYTIME METEORS: The annual Arietid meteor shower peaks on Sunday, June 7th. The Arietids are unusual because they are daytime meteors; they stream out of a point in the sky not far from the sun. The best time to look is just before dawn on Sunday morning when it may be possible to spot a small number of Arietids skimming the top of Earth's atmosphere. Such "Earthgrazing" meteors tend to be long, colorful, and very pretty. After daybreak, when the meteors are no longer visible to the human eye, you can listen to radar echoes from the Arietids by tuning in to our online meteor radar: http://spaceweatherradio.com .

"The Arietids are the strongest daylight shower of the year," notes Bob Lunsford of the American Meteor Society. "If you could see them through the sun's glare, you would count as many as 60 per hour. Also, don't forget that the daytime Zeta Perseids peak only two days later and are considered the second strongest daylight shower. In all my years of viewing I have never seen a Zeta Perseid, but I have seen a few Arietids. They have all been Earthgrazers and very impressive meteors."

Please visit http://spaceweather.com for updates and more information.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Fake Astronaut Gets Hit by Artificial Solar Flare

NASA Science News for June 3, 2009

Researchers are about to subject a fake astronaut complete with blood cells and simulated human tissue to an artificial solar flare. How the unlucky volunteer emerges from the radiation storm will reveal for the first time how much of a threat severe solar flares pose to astronauts en route to the Moon and Mars.

FULL STORY at

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/03jun_fakeastronaut.htm?list894285

Check out our RSS feed at http://science.nasa.gov/rss.xml