aug 062014
Rosetta Arrives at Comet Destination

  After a decade-long journey chasing its target, ESA’s Rosetta has today become the first spacecraft to rendezvous with a comet, opening a new chapter in Solar System exploration. Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko and Rosetta now lie 405 million kilometers from Earth, about half way between the orbits of Jupiter and Mars, rushing towards the inner Solar System at [continue reading]

sep 172013
Cosmic Factory for Making Building Blocks of Life Discovered

  Kent scientists have helped discover a ‘cosmic factory’ for producing the building blocks of life, amino acids, in research published in the journal Nature Geoscience.  The ‘Great Comet’ of 1996, Hyakutake. Image Credit: NASA The team from the University of Kent, Imperial College London, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory have discovered that when icy [continue reading]

apr 262013
Jupiter’s Water Linked to Comet Impact

  ESA’s Herschel space observatory has solved a long-standing mystery as to the origin of water in the upper atmosphere of Jupiter, finding conclusive evidence that it was delivered by the dramatic impact of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 in July 1994. Hubble view of the impact sites, a few days after the impacts. Image Credit: Hubble Space Telescope [continue reading]

apr 102013
Planets and Debris Disk Found Around Retired Star

  ESA’s Herschel space observatory has provided the first images of a dust belt – produced by colliding comets or asteroids – orbiting a sub-giant star known to host a planetary system. Kappa Coronae Borealis, based on Herschel PACS observations at 100 μm. North is up and east is left. The star is in the center of the frame [continue reading]

mrt 112013
Ancient Fossils in Meteorite Discovered!

  Algae-like structures inside a Sri Lankan meteorite are clear evidence of panspermia, the idea that life exists throughout the Universe, say astrobiologists. A piece of the Sri Lankan meteorite, called the Polonnaruwa Meteorite, that crashed Dec. 29, 2012 near the village of Polonnaruwa (Sri Lanka). Image Credit: Chandra Wickramasinghe – Director Buckingham Astrobiology Center at Buckingham University, [continue reading]

mrt 062013
Evidence that Comets could have Seeded Life on Earth

  It’s among the most ancient of questions: What are the origins of life on Earth?   A new experiment simulating conditions in deep space reveals that the complex building blocks of life could have been created on icy interplanetary dust and then carried to Earth, jump-starting life. An image of Halley’s Comet taken in [continue reading]