ESA Science & Technology - Science Results
Detailed analysis of data collected by Rosetta show that comets are the ancient leftovers of early Solar System formation, and not younger fragments resulting from subsequent collisions between other, larger bodies.
Published: 28 July 2016
Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, along with other telescopes on the ground and in space, have discovered the system AR Scorpii to be a new type of exotic binary star.
Published: 27 July 2016
Using observations from ESA's Venus Express satellite, scientists have shown for the first time how weather patterns seen in Venus' thick cloud layers are directly linked to the topography of the surface below. Rather than acting as a barrier to our observations, Venus' clouds may offer insight into what lies beneath.
Published: 18 July 2016
ESA's orbiting X-ray observatory, XMM-Newton, has proved the existence of a 'gravitational vortex' around a black hole. The discovery, aided by NASA's NuSTAR mission, solves a mystery that has eluded astronomers for more than 30 years and will allow them to map the behaviour of matter very close to black holes.
Published: 12 July 2016
Earth's atmosphere is leaking. Every day, around 90 tonnes of material escapes from our planet's upper atmosphere and streams out into space. Although missions such as ESA's Cluster fleet have long been investigating this leakage, there are still many open questions.
Published: 7 July 2016
With its very first observation, the Hitomi X-ray observatory has discovered that the gas in the Perseus cluster of galaxies is much less turbulent than expected. This is a surprise because the Perseus cluster is home to NGC 1275, a highly energetic active galaxy.
Published: 6 July 2016
This new image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope shows a cosmic tadpole, with its bright head and elongated tail, wriggling through the inky black pool of space. Tadpole galaxies are rare and difficult to find in the local Universe. This striking example, named LEDA 36252, was explored as part of a Hubble study into their mysterious...
Published: 28 June 2016
ESA's Venus Express may have helped to explain the puzzling lack of water on Venus. The planet has a surprisingly strong electric field – the first time this has been measured at any planet – that is sufficient to deplete its upper atmosphere of oxygen, one of the components of water.
Published: 20 June 2016
ESA's LISA Pathfinder mission has demonstrated the technology needed to build a space-based gravitational wave observatory.
Published: 7 June 2016
Astronomers have used Hubble to measure the distances to stars in nineteen galaxies more accurately than previously possible. They found that the Universe is currently expanding faster than the rate derived from measurements of the Universe shortly after the Big Bang.
Published: 2 June 2016
Ingredients regarded as crucial for the origin of life on Earth have been discovered at the comet that ESA's Rosetta spacecraft has been probing for almost two years.
Published: 27 May 2016
Astrophysicists have taken a major step forward in understanding how supermassive black holes formed. Using data from Hubble and two other space telescopes, Italian researchers have found the best evidence yet for the seeds that ultimately grow into these cosmic giants.
Published: 24 May 2016
Mysterious high-rise clouds seen appearing suddenly in the martian atmosphere on a handful of occasions may be linked to space weather, say Mars Express scientists.
Published: 23 May 2016
There is a wealth of evidence, collected over the past few decades, that suggests liquid water was abundant in the early history of Mars – one of our nearest and most studied neighbours. A recent study, using data from several spacecraft operating at Mars, paints a detailed picture of the rise and fall of standing bodies of water in a region of...
Published: 10 May 2016
ESA's XMM-Newton has discovered gas streaming away at a quarter of the speed of light from very bright X-ray binaries in two nearby galaxies.
Published: 28 April 2016
Saturn's largest moon is covered in seas and lakes of liquid hydrocarbons – and one sea has now been found to be filled with pure methane, with a seabed covered by a sludge of organic-rich material, and possibly surrounded by wetlands.
Published: 26 April 2016
ESA's Herschel mission releases today a series of unprecedented maps of star-forming hubs in the plane of our Milky Way galaxy. This is accompanied by a set of catalogues listing hundreds of thousands of compact sources that span all phases leading to the birth of stars in our Galaxy.
Published: 22 April 2016
Some of the final results sent back by ESA's Venus Express before it plummeted down through the planet's atmosphere have revealed it to be rippling with atmospheric waves – and, at an average temperature of -157°C, colder than anywhere on Earth.
Published: 19 April 2016
The international Cassini spacecraft has detected the faint but distinct signature of dust coming from outside our Solar System.
Published: 14 April 2016
Rosetta's comet has been seen changing colour and brightness in front of the ESA orbiter's eyes, as the Sun's heat strips away the older surface to reveal fresher material.
Published: 7 April 2016
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