News archive

News archive

It is midnight on 1 January 2004 and you want to send a greeting on your mobile phone to a friend. Sorry, the line is too busy, try again later. If you think you are alone with this problem, you are wrong. Space agencies have had to work out ingenious solutions to prevent similar 'engaged, call later' tones from happening on Mars. For the first time, there will be seven spacecraft on the Red Planet at the same time. Will they all be able to 'phone home'?
Published: 24 February 2003
Who knows how many stars there are?
Published: 23 February 2003
ESA is providing the first chairman for the International Living With A Star (ILWS) programme. ILWS is an unprecedented initiative in which space agencies worldwide are getting together to investigate how variations in the Sun affect the environment of Earth and the other planets, in the short and long term.
Published: 19 February 2003
The Boomerang Nebula is a young planetary nebula and the coldest object found in the Universe so far. The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image illustrates how Hubble's keen vision reveals surprises in celestial objects.
Published: 19 February 2003
Comet C/2002 V1 (NEAT) is putting on a fine show for ESA/NASA's Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) space probe. As the comet swings closer to the Sun, it has got brighter. Now it is the brightest comet ever observed by SOHO's LASCO instrument.
Published: 18 February 2003
Our planet is warming up, and experts warn that the consequences will be serious. To see precisely how the process works, scientists need as much information as possible and from many different sources. There are valuable clues out in space. ESA's missions to Venus, Mars, and Saturn's moon Titan will soon provide useful information to understand how our own planet's climate is regulated.
Published: 13 February 2003
Only the most dedicated of sky watchers will have seen the latest comet, called C/2002 V1 (NEAT). It has hovered near the limits of naked-eye visibility in the evening sky since January 2003. However, you would need a pair of binoculars, pointed in exactly the right direction, to see anything. Log onto the Internet instead, and let the ESA/NASA space probe SOHO show you more about this comet than you would usually see.
Published: 11 February 2003
The European Space Agency shares in the grief that struck NASA and the whole space community today.
Published: 31 January 2003
Space is certainly a cold place, but spacecraft have to face exteremely high temperatures when they are exposed to the Sun's radiation. However, there are other extreme situations in which spacecraft are subject to tremendous heat. ESA's spacecraft must endure temperatures from hell...
Published: 29 January 2003
The cross-magnetotail current sheet, which separates the northern lobe of the magnetotail from the southern lobe, is one of the key objects of magnetospheric physics.
Published: 29 January 2003
The prime scientific objective of Cluster is to derive physical quantities, such as the electric current density that can only be obtained by combining measurements from the four spacecraft. A first example where this has been achieved was obtained close to the external boundary of the Earth's magnetic field, in a Flux Transfer Event (FTE).
Published: 28 January 2003
Somewhere in the distant, old Universe, a population of stars hide undetected. They were the first to form after the birth of the Universe and are supposed to be far bigger in mass than any star visible today.
Published: 26 January 2003
After the initial disappointment of postponing the Rosetta mission, ESA's Director of Science David Southwood expressed his firm determination to accept the delay and take it on as a galvanising challenge.
Published: 20 January 2003
Having considered the conclusions of the Review Board set up to advise on the launch of Rosetta, Arianespace and the European Space Agency have decided on a postponement.
Published: 13 January 2003
ESA's Rosetta will be the first mission to orbit and land on a comet. Comets are icy bodies that travel throughout the Solar System and develop a characteristic tail when they approach the Sun. Rosetta is scheduled to be launched on-board an Ariane-5 rocket in January 2003 from Kourou, French Guiana.
Published: 7 January 2003
The launch date for Rosetta, ESA's mission to a comet, has been delayed by a few days.
Published: 5 January 2003
Our Sun has large features that move across its surface as it rotates. Scientists call them 'supergranules'. Thanks to data from the SOHO spacecraft, scientists believe they have found out why supergranules move faster than the Sun rotates. They do not move faster at all. The apparent rapid rotation is an illusion generated by a pattern of waves, like spectators doing the wave at a sporting event.
Published: 5 January 2003
The Cluster quartet of spacecraft allows, for the first time, to unambiguously determine the characteristics of the tail current sheet in the Earth's magnetosphere.
Published: 29 December 2002
ESA's gamma-ray satellite, Integral, is fully operational. Today Integral's first ground-breaking images of the high-energy Universe were presented in Paris, France. Astronomers call such initial observations 'first light'.
Published: 17 December 2002
Just as motor vehicles need fuelling before long journeys, so spacecraft require full tanks before they set off to visit other worlds. But whereas a typical car may carry 40 or 50 litres of petrol and then be refuelled after travelling a few hundred kilometres, there are no filling stations in space.
Published: 17 December 2002
17-May-2021 16:17 UT

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