Hobo Frank

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Week's Best Space Pictures: Cosmic Web, Martian Vistas, and Earth From Above

A volcano awakens, scientists spin a massive cosmic web, and NASA's Mars rover continues to climb Mount Sharp.

Newfound Mega-Storms on Uranus Pose Planetary Puzzle

Known for calm weather, the seventh planet from the sun is suddenly sporting a series of storms.<p>A distant, icy, green giant—the planet Uranus—appears to have unexpectedly awakened from a long slumber. Astronomers have discovered a yet unexplained rash of extreme storms on the normally placid planet.<p>…

How to make a diamond from scratch - with peanut butter

Understanding the way diamonds are formed deep in the Earth could explain how life evolved on our planet. So a team in Germany are attempting to forge the gemstones themselves, from carbon dioxide – and peanut butter. David Robson reports.<p>Every so often, Dan Frost hears a dull thud and his office …

Meteorites

Man Makes Special Ammunition For 3-D Printed Guns

Time intensive assembly required<p>As police from Germany and Australia will tell you, 3-D printed guns are likely to be as fatal to the person firing as they are to anyone else. This is true primarily for poorly made 3-D printed guns using weaker plastics that can't absorb the explosive shock from …

Are there any pollution-free places left on Earth?

Humans appear to have done a thorough job of contaminating the Earth’s rivers, oceans and atmosphere, says Rachel Nuwer. Is there anywhere pristine left on the planet?<p>Somewhere between 1.8 million and 12,000 years ago, our ancestors mastered the craft of fire building. Anthropologists often cite …

How the physics of the industrial revolution now connects cosmology and particle physics<p>We had a particle physics seminar at UCL on Friday; we usually do. This one was from Malcolm Fairbairn and was mainly about Dark Matter.<p>“Dark Matter” is the mysterious stuff which we postulate to explain several …

Massive radio telescope probes sky for black holes, Milky Way

The Arizona Radio Observatory's newly acquired 40-foot dish is probing far into the sky, and bringing new light to galaxies far, far away.<p>The massively powerful radio telescope can detect galaxy matter other telescopes miss. Dr. Lucy Ziurys is the director of the Arizona Radio Observatory.<p>She …

40-Year-Old Russian Engine at Heart of Rocket Investigation

Refurbished Soviet rocket engines involved in the accident will draw the attention of investigators.<p>The fiery destruction of an Antares rocket left behind a launch pad covered in debris and questions about the rocket's use of refurbished Soviet-era engines.<p>Investigators combed through the wreckage …

Mystery of Earth's Water Origin Solved

Instead of arriving later by comet impact, Earth's waters have likely existed since our planet's birth.<p>The water that makes Earth a majestic blue marble was here from the time of our planet's birth, according to a new study of ancient meteorites, scientists reported Thursday.<p>Where do the oceans …

Will Virgin Galactic's Crash End Space Tourism?

The fatal explosion of SpaceShipTwo in the Mojave Desert may lead to more scrutiny of the fledgling space passenger industry.<p>The crash of Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo experimental space plane on Friday, which killed one test pilot and severely injured another, may have wrecked the future of space …

Will Virgin SpaceShipTwo crash set back space tourism?

<b>The significance of Friday's flight had been signalled for some weeks.</b><p>Virgin Galactic executives had let it be known that they were about to initiate a series of test outings that they hoped would finally lead them into commercial service after years of delay.<p>SpaceShipTwo had previously fired its …

APOD: The Day After Mars (2014 Nov 01) Image Credit & Copyright: Rolando Ligustri (CARA Project, CAST) http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141101.html Explanation: October 31, 1938 was the day after Martians encountered planet Earth, and everything was calm. Reports of the invasion were revealed to be part of a Halloween radio drama, the now famous broadcast based on H.G. Wells' scifi novel War of the Worlds. On Mars October 20, 2014 was calm too, the day after its close encounter with Comet Siding Spring. Not a hoax, this comet really did come within 86,700 miles or so of Mars, about 1/3 the Earth-Moon distance. Earth's spacecraft and rovers in Mars orbit and on the surface reported no ill effects though, and had a ringside seat as a visitor from the outer solar system passed by. Spanning over 2 degrees against stars of the constellation Ophiuchus, this colorful telescopic snapshot captures our view of Mars on the day after. Bluish star 51 Ophiuchi is at the upper right and the comet is just emerging from the Red Planet's bright glare. http://cara.uai.it/ http://www.castfvg.it/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141101 #APOD

Why NASA Blew Up a Rocket Just After Launch

A National Geographic staffer's on-scene account of the Antares rocket failure.<p><b>WALLOPS ISLAND, Virginia—Every time NASA launches a rocket, two safety officers have one weighty decision: They have to decide whether to push a self-destruct button if it appears the launch is going awry.</b><p>If they make …

Feast Your Eyes On The Best Microscope Images Of The Year

From cricket tongues to DVD circuitry, an amazing world awaits under the microscope.<p>Every year since 1974, Nikon has herded a gaggle of nerds into a room for an impossible task: Pore over thousands of microscope images and pick the very best ones.<p>I was lucky enough to join the judge’s circle this …

Rocket Explodes, Aborting NASA Mission to Resupply Space Station

No injuries were reported in the launch explosion on Tuesday.<p>In a fiery nighttime explosion, an Antares rocket carrying supplies to the International Space Station exploded seconds after launch on Tuesday.<p>Launched at 6:22 p.m. EDT, the spacecraft ascended straight up before an explosion blossomed …