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Cassini begins plunging into Saturn’s rings

Cassini begins plunging into Saturn’s rings

Marking the beginning of its ‘grand finale,’ the National Aeronautics & Space Administration’s Cassini spacecraft has started plunging into the gap between the gaseous planet Saturn and its rings.

Cassini’s grand finale started after it made its final close flyby of Titan, a potentially habitable moon of Saturn. The spacecraft made its final close flyby last Saturday, and collected detailed images of the moon’s surface.

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Cassini heading towards final close encounter with Titan

Cassini heading toward final close encounter with Titan

The U.S. space agency NASA’s Cassini spacecraft is on the path to make its final close flyby of Saturn’s moon Titan this weekend in a bid to provide scientists with detailed images of its surface.

Cassini’s closest approach to the moon Titan is scheduled for 11:08 p.m. PDT on 21st of April of 2:08 a.m. EDT on 22nd of April. The spacecraft will make a pass as close as 608 miles or 979 kilometers above the potentially habitable moon’s surface at a speed of around 13,000 mph.

NASA astronaut & Russian cosmonaut successfully launched for ISS

NASA astronaut & Russian cosmonaut successfully launched for the ISS

American astronaut Jack Fischer and Russian cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin were boosted into Earth’s orbit on Thursday for their planned five-month stay on the International Space Station (ISS).

NASA’s Fischer and Roscosmos’ Yurchikhin lifted off on a Russian Soyuz MS-04 spacecraft carried by a Soyuz-FG rocket from Kazakhstan’s Baikonur Cosmodrome at 3:13 a.m. EDT (0713 GMT) on April 20, 2017.

Launched on a planned “fast-track,” 6-orbit rendezvous, the duo is set to dock at the orbiting outpost’s Poisk module at around 9:23 a.m. EDT or 1323 GMT.

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Orbital ATK all set to launch cargo ship to space station

Orbital ATK all set to launch cargo ship to space station

Orbital ATK’s Atlas V rocket carrying an unmanned Cygnus cargo ship is all set to blast off from a NASA launch pad for delivering food and supplies for the astronauts living aboard the International Space Station (ISS).

The Cygnus cargo ship carrying Atlas V rocket is poised to be launched during a thirty-minute launch window starting at 11:11 a.m. (1511 GMT) from a launch pad in Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Tuesday.

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Mile-wide asteroid to make its closest pass to Earth in 400 years

Mile-wide asteroid to make its closest pass to Earth in 400 years

A mile-wide ‘potentially hazardous’ asteroid is set to make a relatively close flyby to Earth on Wednesday this week, the U.S. space agency NASA has warned.

The asteroid dubbed the Rock, which is formally known as Object 2014 JO25, will pass by Earth at a distance of 1.1 million miles or roughly 4.6 times the distance between Earth and the Moon. The close flyby is due to take place at 8:24AM ET or 1:24PM BST on Wednesday.

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NASA detects hydrogen gas on Saturn’s moon Enceladus

NASA detects hydrogen gas on Saturn’s moon Enceladus

NASA scientists have announced that the agency’s Cassini spacecraft has detected hydrogen gas in a plume gushing from a liquid water ocean hidden beneath the icy shell of Saturn’s moon Enceladus.

Hydrogen is a key energy source for microbial life and its detection in Enceladus’ atmosphere has boosted scientists’ belief that some of Saturn’s moons could be supporting alien life in the form of microbes.

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NASA set to reveal new discoveries on oceans beyond Earth

NASA set to reveal new discoveries on oceans beyond Earth

The National Aeronautics & Space Administration (NASA) is set to reveal discoveries related to ocean worlds in our solar system, according to a newly released statement by space agency officials.

The U.S. space agency team told reporters that the revelations would be related particularly to discoveries made by Saturn probe Cassini and the Hubble space telescope. The Cassini spacecraft was launched in 1997 and it reached the Saturn system in 2004.

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Jupiter to be at its closest point to Earth tonight

Jupiter to be at its closest point to Earth tonight

NASA astronomers have predicted that Jupiter, the biggest planet in the solar system, will reach its point of opposition tonight, 7th of April.

The gaseous giant will position itself in the constellation of Virgo almost in a straight line from the Sun, lighting up brightly in the night sky.

In addition, the planet will be at its closest point to Earth. According to a statement released by NASA astronomers, Jupiter will rise in the east along with the Sun and trudge across the heavens, eventually setting in the west at sunrise.

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NASA astronaut just few days away from setting new record

NASA astronaut just few days away from setting new record

Veteran NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson is just a few days away from setting a new record in space – in terms of total cumulative time spent in Earth’s orbit.

Whitson will break the existing record of 534 days on 24th of April, which will mark 535th day in space. Currently, the record is held by astronaut Jeff Williams.

The 57-year-old astronaut recalled that she grew up and sold chickens at an Iowa farm to raise money to pay for her first pilot’s license. She stressed that anyone can pursue and make one’s dreams come true.

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Boeing details what its deep space vehicle would look like

Boeing details what its deep space vehicle would look like

Boeing, one of the six private companies that have teamed up with NASA to develop deep space vehicles, has just detailed what its deep space vehicle would look like. With entry of private companies in space technology sector, experts are expecting lower costs of space missions and faster technology transfer.

The deep space vehicle could be used to take to stage a piloted mission to Mars. The aerospace outfit is already working with the U.S. space agency to develop the Space Launch System (SLS) – a very powerful lifter to power a Mars shot.

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