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Space News Archive - September 15, 2009

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A powerful lightning storm in Saturn’s atmosphere that began in mid-January 2009 has become the Solar System’s longest continuously observed thunderstorm.

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NASA will showcase new images from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's seven instruments and provide updates about the topography of the moon's south pole during a news conference at 1 pm EDT Thursday, Sept 17.

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Officials are likely to recommend that the launch of Russia’s leading planetary spacecraft, scheduled to take place in less than two months, be put off until 2011.

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A team of University of Hawai'i at Mānoa researchers led by Ralf Kaiser, physical chemist at UH Mānoa, unraveled the chemical evolution of the orange-brownish colored atmosphere of Saturn's moon Titan, the only solar system body besides Venus and Earth with a solid surface and thick atmosphere.

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NASA says freeing its Mars rover Spirit that's been stuck in loose martian sand since April will be very difficult and might even prove impossible.

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Networks of giant polygonal troughs etched across crater basins on Mars have been identified as desiccation cracks caused by evaporating lakes, providing further evidence of a warmer, wetter martian past.

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Less than two months after they inaugurated the world’s largest telescope, University of Florida astronomers have used one of the world’s most advanced telescopic instruments to gather images of the heavens.

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NASA's James Webb Space Telescope is starting to come together. A major component of the telescope, the Integrated Science Instrument Module structure, recently arrived at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. for testing in the Spacecraft Systems Development and Integration Facility.

Word of the Day
barratry
  • The offense of persistently instigating lawsuits, typically groundless ones.
  • An unlawful breach of duty on the part of a ship's master or crew resulting in injury to the ship's owner.
  • Sale or purchase of positions in church or state.
This word ultimately comes from the Old French word 'barater,' to cheat.
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