India’s Chandrayaan-2 moon orbiter catalogs tons of mysterious solar flares

New research has created a comprehensive catalog of mysterious, slow-building and ultra-hot explosions coming from the sun’s atmosphere. The findings suggest a substantial amount of these strangely lethargic flares, which were first discovered in the 1980s, warrant a deeper investigation. Solar flares are explosions of energy that occur when the magnetic field lines of the … Read more

NASA orbiter spies Japan’s struggling SLIM moon lander on lunar surface (image)

A NASA orbiter caught sight of Japan’s SLIM moon lander on the lunar surface after its historic touchdown. SLIM, or the Smart Lander for Investigating Moon, is operated by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). It touched down on the moon in a precision landing on Jan. 19, making Japan the fifth country to make … Read more

NASA moon orbiter beams laser off Indian lunar lander in historic 1st

Reflect on this! NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) recently bounced a laser off India’s Vikram moon lander, marking a space-communications first. Vikram touched down near the lunar south pole on Aug. 23, 2023 on India’s pioneering Chandrayaan-3 mission, which also included a rover named Pragyan. Vikram carried on its body the tiny NASA Laser Retroreflector … Read more

Mars Express orbiter suggests evidence of ancient microbial life, water and volcanism on Red Planet

A team from the University of Arizona’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory has used spacecraft images and data from ground penetrating radar to create 3D reconstructions of lava flows in Mars’ Elysium Planitia. The researchers discovered that lava likely erupted through fissures as recently as one million years ago, covering a region on the Red Planet … Read more

Solar Orbiter decoding the sun’s mysterious miniflares: ‘just the tip of the iceberg’

Three months ago, scientists spotted tiny, short-lived energy jets surfacing from dark regions in the corona, the sun’s outer atmosphere.  Upon closer look, these jets appeared as bright flashes everywhere on the sun‘s disk. They lasted only 20 to 100 seconds but packed a powerful punch: A single minute-long jet carried energy equivalent to the … Read more