Astronomy News

Martian explorer loses contact with Earth after 15 years of discovery
Tue Feb 19, 2019 10:37am

After nearly 15 year exploring Mars, NASA has called time on its Opportunity rover mission.

Low-cost tech is making Earth orbit ever-more accessible for commercial companie
Fri Feb 08, 2019 1:04pm

A new 3D engine could usher in a new era of rocket building. The engine is lighter, more efficent and free of joins and welds that have been weak points on previous rocket engines.

Written by Jane Williamson

Being weightless could affect how astronauts make decisions
Thu Feb 07, 2019 4:19pm

A new study has found the decision making of astronauts might be affected by being in zero gravity. Psychologists asked volunteers to perform a decision based task, and found that when volunteers were subjected to simulated weightlessness, their performance was markedly different to when they were on 'Earth'.

Take part in our week-long campaign and get to know the night sky
Thu Feb 07, 2019 3:11pm

Sign up to Back Garden Astronomy Week and take part in BBC Sky at Night Magazine's new stargazing campaign.

The space rock was found using off-the-shelf telescopes
Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:49pm

A planetary body has been found that bridges the gap between the dust of the primordial Solar System and the planets we see today.

Fri Feb 01, 2019 5:23pm

Curiosity accidentally recreated an experiment first performed by Apollo 17, finding that Mount Sharp is not as dense as previously thought. The finding throws uncertainty on how the mountain was created. 

Listen to the latest podcast from the makers of BBC Sky at Night Magazine
Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:22pm

 

In the latest episode of Radio Astronomy, the BBC Sky at Night Magazine team look at the recent Chinese lunar mission Chang’e 4, discuss the New Horizons flyby of Ultima Thule and wonder why a black hole isn’t as strong as a fridge magnet.

Plus, they speak to Martin Harwit, astrophysicist and author of Cosmic Discovery, about how some of the most important astronomical discoveries were made.

The science and music festival returns to Jodrell Bank for summer 2019
Wed Jan 23, 2019 9:34am

The Bluedot science and music festival returns this summer to Jodrell Bank Observatory in Cheshire, and the first details of 2019's speakers and acts have been announced.

More mundane reasons could be behind strange orbits in the outer Solar System
Mon Jan 21, 2019 12:40pm

Something is altering the orbits of objects on the outskirts of our Solar System.

The existing theory is that a ninth planet could be shepherding these objects into their strange orbits, but a new idea states it could simply be the cumulative gravity of all objects beyond Neptune creating the wonky worlds.

Cassini spied the first rainfall in the moon’s north, heralding in summer
Thu Jan 17, 2019 12:17pm

Recently discovered rainfall has heralded the start of summer in the northern hemisphere of Saturn's moon, Titan.

Climate scientists have been on the look out for clouds in Cassini images of the moon's north, but failed to find any.

Instead, it was the reflection from a recent rainfall that indicated arrival of the summer season.

Royal Observatory's Tom Kerss reveals how to capture a nightscape
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:53am

With entries now open for the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2019 competition, Royal Observatory Greenwich astronomer Tom Kerss reveals his tips for capturing a magnificent nightscape.

As told to Lorin R Robinson.

The planet was hidden in ‘missing’ observations
Tue Jan 08, 2019 12:35pm

The Exoplanet Explorers website helped to uncover a world which lies in a size 'gap' - the range between 1.5 and two Earth radii where few planets have been found.

The planet was hidden in data that had previously been throw out to prevent errors, but which could now be analysed safely.

Get all the details for this year's astrophotography competition
Tue Jan 08, 2019 11:26am

The dates and details have been announced for this year's Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition. Find out how to enter below.

Initial mission science results released by NASA scientists
Fri Jan 04, 2019 11:20am

The initial findings from the New Horizons spacecraft's flyby at Ultima Thule have been released by NASA scientists, although the majority of data is yet to come.

Fri Dec 21, 2018 2:37pm

At 05:33GMT on New Year’s Day 2019, NASA’s New Horizons made a flyby of the Kuiper Belt Object known as Ultima Thule.

Ahead of the encounter we spoke to Ramy El-Maarry from Birkbeck, University of London, who worked with ESA’s Rosetta team before joining New Horizons as a science team collaborator.

Words by Elizabeth Pearson

Apollo 8 was the first crewed mission to circle the Moon
Fri Dec 21, 2018 10:24am

Apollo 8, the first crewed mission to circle the Moon, is best remembered for its Earthrise photo, and for the Christmas message its crew broadcast to the world from orbit on Christmas Eve, 1968. Apollo 8's Commander, Frank Borman, spoke to us from his home in Billings, Montana about how, for him, escaping Earth's gravitational pull for the first time was much more about winning the Cold War than space exploration.

 

Words by Jamie Carter.

What has New Horizons taught us about Pluto?
Thu Dec 20, 2018 3:32pm

As the NASA spacecraft flies past the Kuiper Belt object Ultima Thule, Paul Abel reveals what New Horizons has already shown us about the dwarf planet it passed in 2015.

Pattern of meteorological events spotted on gas giant
Wed Dec 19, 2018 10:35am

The changing features of Jupiter's stripes are well-known among astronomers. A team at the University of Leicester has been attempting to discern a pattern in meteorological events at the planet's equator.

Ringed planet's features could be gone in 100 million years
Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:48am

Saturn is one of the most striking sights in our Solar System, not least because of its prominent rings. But new research suggests the rings might be disappearing at a surprising rate.

A heliacal rising or an alignment of planets? Nigel Henbest explores
Mon Dec 17, 2018 11:45am

A heliacal rising or an alignment of planets - what might the star of Bethlehem have been? Nigel Henbest explores this enduring mystery.

News
NASA's Mars rover Curiosity is in good health but takes a short break while engineers...
A long, hard look at the Whirlpool galaxy with NASA's NuSTAR mission has revealed a...
Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, along with older data from the Voyager 2...
We use cookies to improve your experience of our website. Cookies perform functions like recognising you each time you visit and delivering advertising messages that are relevant to you. Read more here