Web
Analytics
The news is by your side.

Asteroid

NASA probe finds signs of water on nearby asteroid

ORLANDO: NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has discovered ingredients for water on a relatively nearby skyscraper-sized asteroid, a rocky acorn-shaped object that may hold clues to the origins of life on Earth, scientists said on Monday. OSIRIS-REx, which flew last week within a scant 12 miles (19 km) of the asteroid Bennu some 1.4 million miles (2.25 million km) from Earth, found traces of hydrogen and oxygen molecules - part of the recipe for water and thus the potential for life - embedded in the asteroid’s rocky surface.…

NASA spacecraft approaches asteroid, snaps first picture

TAMPA: Two years after launching from Florida, a NASA spacecraft is closing in on an ancient asteroid, Bennu, for a sample of space dust that could reveal clues to the start of life in the solar system. The spacecraft, OSIRIS-REx, has even snapped its first, blurry pic of the cosmic body, which is about the size of a small mountain, about 500 yards (meters) in diameter. The spacecraft is designed to circle Bennu, and reach out with a robotic arm to "high-five" its surface, then return the sample it collects to Earth in…

Japan probe arrives at asteroid after nearly four-year space odyssey

TOKYO: A space probe of Japan named after a falcon arrived at an asteroid 300 million kilometers from Earth on Wednesday after a three-and-a-half year journey on a mission to seek the origins of life. The Hayabusa 2 blasted off in December 2014 for the asteroid Ryugu on a pioneering mission to take samples that scientists hope will help reveal how life began. Its round-trip mission is set to take six years. “Everything has gone as planned,” a spokesman for the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) told a news…

Asteroid bigger than a continent dangerously close to Earth that it’s visible to the naked eye

A gigantic asteroid four times bigger than the UK has come so near to our planet that it’s visible in the night sky without a telescope. The space rock 4 Vesta, which is the fourth largest known asteroid in the solar system, can be seen until July 16. It recently came with 106 million miles of Earth – the closest it has reached to Earth for 20 years. Vesta’s total surface area is 800,000 km², which is roughly the same as Pakistan and a lot bigger than the 242,495 km² United Kingdom. The space rock is named Vesta…

Visitor from alien star system wears insulating coat: astronomers

A cigar-shaped rock zooming through our Solar System -- the first object from a foreign star system ever spotted in our midst -- is cloaked in a coat of organic material, astronomers said Monday. Dubbed Oumuamua, Hawaiian for "messenger" or "scout", the object was first viewed by telescopes in October. Given its weird trajectory, surprised scientists immediately concluded it was from beyond our own planetary system. Astronomers had long assumed that interstellar objects -- from other star systems -- would be mainly…

Asteroid grazes past Earth in ‘critical’ rehearsal

PARIS: A house-sized asteroid grazed past Earth Thursday, passing harmlessly inside the Moon's orbit, as predicted, to give experts a rare opportunity to rehearse for a real strike threat in future. Dubbed 2012 TC4, the object's passing allowed scientists to practice spotting incoming objects, predicting their size and trajectory, and tracking their passage with a global network of telescopes and radars. "We pretended that this was a critical object and exercised our communication," said Detlef Koschny of the European…

Largest asteroid in a century to whiz by Sept 1

MIAMI: The largest asteroid in more than a century will whiz safely past Earth on September 1 at a safe but unusually close distance of about 4.4 million miles (7 million kilometers), NASA said. The asteroid was discovered in 1981, and is named Florence after the famed 19th century founder of modern nursing, Florence Nightingale. "Florence is the largest asteroid to pass this close to our planet since the first near-Earth asteroid was discovered over a century ago," said a US space agency statement. It is one of the…

Asteroid to shave past Earth on Oct 12: ESA

PARIS: A house-sized asteroid will shave past our planet on October 12, far inside the Moon's orbit but without posing any threat, astronomers said on Thursday. The space rock will zoom by harmlessly at a distance of about 44,000 kilometres (27,300 miles) -- an eighth of the distance from the Earth to the Moon, according to the European Space Agency, This is just far enough to miss our geostationary satellites orbiting at about 36,000 kilometres. "We know for sure that there is no possibility for this object to hit…

WATCH: NASA releases images of asteroid which made closest contact with Earth

PARIS: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has released images of asteroid 2014 JO25. The images were obtained through NASA's 70-meter (230-foot) antenna at the Goldstone Deep Space Communications Complex in California. “Radar images of asteroid 2014 JO25 were obtained in the early morning hours on Tuesday. The images reveal a peanut-shaped asteroid that rotates about once every five hours. The images have resolutions as fine as 25 feet (7.5 meters) per pixel,” said an NASA press release. The…