The Facts About Newly Discovered Comet ISON

Comet ISON as imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope

Comet ISON was discovered in September 2012 by Russian astronomers Vitali Nevski and Artyom Novichonok.  They are part of a night sky survey program called the International Scientific Optical Network (ISON).  The comet was named after this program.

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A Star Near The End of It’s Life

U Camelopardalis - A Carbon Star

U Camelopardalis – A Carbon Star

The Hubble Space Telescope recently captured this amazing image of a star nearing the end of it’s life.  The above image is of a star known as U Camelopardalis.  It is located near the North Celestial Pole and can be found in the constellation Camelopardalis – also known as The Giraffe.

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Red Bull Stratos Mission: Successful and Speed of Sound Broken by Felix Baumgartner

The Red Bull Stratos mission, undertaken on October 14, 2012, went off without any major problems.  The mission was an attempt for a balloon assisted aircraft to reach a world record altitude of 120,000 ft and for a human to then perform a freefall skydive from the vehicle at that height.  The mission also had the potential for a human breaking the speed barrier during freefall.  This was achieved during the freefall descent to Earth.

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Galaxy Twisted After Collision

ESO 510-G13 Galaxy

Twisted Galaxy ESO 510-G13

About 150,000 light years away, a cosmic collision is producing a twisted galaxy with a bright smooth central core.  In April of 2001, Hubble’s Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 was trained on a galaxy located in the southern constellation Hydra.  This galaxy is known as ESO 510-G13.

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Unsuccessful Mars Rovers: The Failed Soviet Prop-M Rover

The Soviet Prop-M Mars Rover

The Soviet Prop-M Mars Rover

With the recent landing of NASA’s latest Mars rover, Curiosity, there has been a renewed excitement for discoveries to be found on Mars.  However, while the Curiosity rover currently has much of the attention of space rover fans, let’s take a moment and discuss all of the rovers that were sent to land on the planet but failed.  After all, Curiosity was not the first rover to attempt to land on Mars.

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