News archive

News archive

The Mars Society, the US-born group lobbying for the human exploration of Mars, is expanding into Europe.
Published: 8 October 2001
Order is returning to the solar wind as the Sun begins to shake off the chaos that has characterised its behaviour during the recent peak in its 11-year activity cycle.
Published: 8 October 2001
A very small, faint galaxy - possibly one of the longsought `building blocks' of present-day galaxies - has beendiscovered by a collaboration between the Hubble Space Telescope and the Keck Telescopes at a tremendous distance of 13.4 billion light-years (based on the estimate of 14 billion years as the age of the Universe). The discovery was made possible by examining small areasof sky viewed through massive intervening clusters of galaxies. Theseact as a powerful gravitational lens, magnifying distant objects andallowing scientists to probe how galaxies assemble at very earlytimes. This has profound implications for our understanding of howand when the first stars and galaxies formed in the Universe.
Published: 5 October 2001
The Dutch morning mist enveloped the Danish flag on 25 September when the country's Minister for Information Technology and Research, Mrs Birte Weiss, arrived at ESA's European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC). The Minister was accompanied by a party of Danish Parliamentarians led by Mrs Lise Haekkerup, Vice Chairperson of the Danish Parliamentary Research Committee. The visit coincided with the formal delivery of the Danish JEM-X instrument to fly on ESA's INTEGRAL mission.
Published: 27 September 2001
Important steps towards the realisation of a unique East-West collaboration were taken during a recent visit to Beijing by European scientists and engineers. During the week of 10-14 September, representatives from ESA and 10 European instrument teams took the opportunity to renew acquaintance with engineers working on the Double Star mission.
Published: 27 September 2001
Important steps towards the realisation of a unique East-West collaboration were taken during a recent visit to Beijing by European scientists and engineers. During the week of 10-14 September, representatives from ESA and 10 European instrument teams took the opportunity to renew acquaintance with engineers working on the Double Star mission.
Published: 27 September 2001
ESA closing in on Earth-like planets and gravitational waves
Published: 27 September 2001
15 years after ESA's Giotto spacecraft achieved an historic close range reconnaissance of Comet Halley, another probe from Earth has successfully followed in its footsteps.
Published: 26 September 2001
The status of INTEGRAL - the International Gamma-Ray Astrophysics Laboratory of the European Space Agency (ESA) - and the Irish involvement in the mission are being presented at a press conference organised in Dublin on 4 October by the Royal Irish Academy (RIA), Enterprise Ireland and ESA.
Published: 26 September 2001
ESA's Huygens probe came through its 8th in-flight check-out on 20 September with flying colours. Signals sent from the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft when it was almost 1 billion kilometres from home indicated that all is well with the probe's sensitive systems.
Published: 24 September 2001
Sending a spacecraft such as Rosetta millions of kilometres into space to explore other worlds is one of the most exciting endeavours undertaken by modern science. However, the fiery launch and prolonged trek to rendezvous with a comet is not the only part of the story. Without a means of gathering the data from deep space, analysing and storing it, the spacecraft's mission is worthless.
Published: 20 September 2001
Spacecraft are built to be as sturdy and as light as possible but their ride into space can be a bit rough. To ensure they will survive the launch and function as planned in orbit, all satellites are submitted tostrenuous vibration tests before launch.
Published: 19 September 2001
Everyone is familiar with animals' tails, but less well known is the fact that most planets have tails too - huge, magnetic tails filled with electrified gas rather than fur, flesh and muscle. Since the end of August, ESA's four Cluster spacecraft have been flying along the middle of the Earth's magnetotail, carrying out the most in-depth exploration of this region ever undertaken.
Published: 17 September 2001
The dedicated team effort to understand and correctsystematic effects in observations from Hubble's Faint ObjectSpectrograph has now been concluded. In future astronomers who usethe observations from this instrument will be able to measure theexact velocity of interstellar clouds, as well as the motions ofindividual parts of nebulae and galaxies. This will for instance leadto better determinations of black hole masses.
Published: 11 September 2001
This is such an unusual view of the impressive M16 nebula, also known as 'The Eagle', that even the most devoted sky-lovers will be surprised. It shows exactly what in the best known pictures of this famous nebula remains invisible: huge amounts of the cold dust that enshrouds newborn stars.
Published: 7 September 2001
By studying lunar samples meteoriticists have contributed hugely to our understanding of the Moon. A sample-return mission to Mars would provide the community with a rich resource with which to investigate our nearest neighbour.But when will there be a such a mission? A meeting to be held in Rome will provide the meteoritical community with an opportunity to express their interest in a sample-return mission to Mars.
Published: 3 September 2001
ESA's four Cluster spacecraft continue to provide ground-breaking new information about the interaction between our nearest star - the Sun - and planet Earth. As they sail through the sea of plasma (electrons and protons) that fills near-Earth space, the identical instruments on the Cluster quartet are helping scientists to create the first three-dimensional views of this turbulent region.
Published: 30 August 2001
The structural model of the Mars Express spacecraft arrived at Intespace, Toulouse on 29 August to begin its first system level test campaign. During this six-week campaign, the spacecraft will be subjected to mechanical qualification tests to ensure the integrity of the structure during launch.
Published: 30 August 2001
Geologists poring over the latest images from Mars keep on turning up new and tantalising evidence that water once flowed freely on the planet's surface - and may still flow from time to time. If their interpretation is right, underground aquifers or ice layers should be commonplace on the planet. Yet no spacecraft flown so far has been capable of identifying them.
Published: 27 August 2001
A new, detailed Hubble image of a planetary nebula inthe making shows for the first time the complex gas structurespredicted by theory. Astronomers are thrilled by observations showingthe violent gas collisions that give rise to supersonic shock fronts.
Published: 24 August 2001
18-Sep-2021 05:30 UT

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