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Latest and Breaking Space Science News

NASA Goddard technology helps fight forest pests
(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) A joint operation using technology developed at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., will help the US Forest Service understand the impacts of pests on northeastern trees.

California 'rain debt' equal to average full year of precipitation
(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) A new NASA study has concluded California accumulated a debt of about 20 inches of precipitation between 2012 and 2015 -- the average amount expected to fall in the state in a single year. The deficit was driven primarily by a lack of air currents moving inland from the Pacific Ocean that are rich in water vapor.

Telescopes team up to find distant Uranus-sized planet through microlensing
(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and the W.M. Keck Observatory in Hawaii have made independent confirmations of an exoplanet orbiting far from its central star. The planet was discovered through a technique called gravitational microlensing.

Stormy seas in Sagittarius
(ESA/Hubble Information Centre) Some of the most breathtaking views in the Universe are created by nebulae -- hot, glowing clouds of gas. This new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows the center of the Lagoon Nebula, an object with a deceptively tranquil name. The region is filled with intense winds from hot stars, churning funnels of gas, and energetic star formation, all embedded within an intricate haze of gas and pitch-dark dust.

Special issue: Philae results shed light on the nature of comets
(American Association for the Advancement of Science) During the first ever landing of a probe on a comet, the world held its breath as Philae survived a bouncy landing on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on Nov. 12, 2014.

NASA's MMS formation will give unique look at magnetic reconnection
(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) On July 9, 2015, the four spacecraft of NASA's Magnetospheric Multiscale, or MMS, mission began flying in a pyramid shape for the first time. The four-sided pyramid shape -- called a tetrahedron -- means that scientists' observations will be spread out over three dimensions.

'Failed stars' host powerful auroral displays
(California Institute of Technology) By observing a brown dwarf 20 light-years away using both radio and optical telescopes, a team led by Gregg Hallinan, assistant professor of astronomy at Caltech, has found that such so-called failed stars host powerful auroras near their magnetic poles -- additional evidence that brown dwarfs are more like giant planets than small stars.

Dense star clusters shown to be binary black hole factories
(Northwestern University) The merger of two black holes is one of the most sought-after observations of modern astronomy. The first observatories capable of directly detecting gravitational waves -- ripples in the fabric of spacetime predicted by Albert Einstein -- will begin observing the universe later this year. When these waves rolling in from space are detected on Earth for the first time, Northwestern University astrophysicists predict astronomers will 'hear,' through these waves, five times more colliding black holes than previously expected.

This week from AGU: Comet video, ocean carbon & 4 new research papers
(American Geophysical Union) Images of an unusually dusty comet have revealed strange streaming clumps that could hold the secrets to how comets create their beautiful, sweeping, striated tails.

York scientists unlock secrets of stars through aluminium
(University of York) Physicists at the University of York have revealed a new understanding of nucleosynthesis in stars, providing insight into the role massive stars play in the evolution of the Milky Way and the origins of the Solar System.

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