Planetary systems

This photo made available by the European Space Agency and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency shows the earth as seen by the BepiColombo spacecraft on April 10, 2020. The Mercury-bound mission swooped past Earth, tweaking its round-about path to the solar system’s smallest and innermost planet. (ESA/JAXA via AP)
April 10, 2020 - 11:24 am
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — A Mercury-bound spacecraft swooped past Earth on Friday, tweaking its roundabout path to the solar system’s smallest and innermost planet. Launched 1 1/2 years ago, Europe and Japan’s BepiColombo spacecraft passed within 8,000 miles (12,700 kilometers) of Earth. The...
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This Jan. 1, 2019 image from NASA shows Arrokoth, the farthest, most primitive object in the Solar System ever to be visited by a spacecraft. Astronomers reported Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020 that this pristine, primordial cosmic body photographed by the New Horizons probe is relatively smooth with far fewer craters than expected. It's also entirely ultrared, or highly reflective, which is commonplace in the faraway Twilight Zone of our solar system known as the the Kuiper Belt. (NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute/Roman Tkachenko via AP)
February 13, 2020 - 2:36 pm
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — NASA's space snowman is revealing fresh secrets from its home far beyond Pluto. More than a year after its close encounter with the snowman-shaped object, the New Horizons spacecraft is still sending back data from more than 4 billion miles (6.4 billion kilometers) away...
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Nobel Physics Laureate Didier Queloz speaks during a press conference at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm, Sweden Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019. (Jonas Ekstromer /TT News Agency via AP)
December 07, 2019 - 11:12 am
STOCKHOLM (AP) — An astronomer who shares this year's Nobel physics prize for discovering a planet outside the Earth's solar system is taking issue with people who shrug off climate change on the grounds that humans will eventually leave for distant planets. Didier Queloz was one of several Nobel...
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This image released on Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019, by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), shows asteroid Ryugu taken by Japan’s Hayabusa2 spacecraft. The Japan spacecraft has departed from the distant asteroid, starting its yearlong journey home after successfully completing its mission to bring back soil samples and data that could provide clues to the origins of the solar system. (JAXA via AP)
November 13, 2019 - 3:28 am
TOKYO (AP) — Japan's Hayabusa2 spacecraft departed from a distant asteroid on Wednesday, starting its yearlong journey home after successfully completing its mission to bring back soil samples and data that could provide clues to the origins of the solar system, the country's space agency said. The...
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This Oct. 12, 2019 photo made available by NASA shows the comet 2I/Borisov, seen by the Hubble Space Telescope. It’s the second known interstellar visitor to swoop through our backyard. An amateur astronomer from Crimea, Gennady Borisov, discovered the comet in August, two years after the first alien guest, a cigar-shaped rock, popped up. (NASA, ESA, D. Jewitt (UCLA) via AP)
October 16, 2019 - 2:15 pm
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The Hubble Space Telescope has captured the best pictures yet of our newest interstellar visitor. This comet from outside our solar system is zooming by us at a blistering 110,000 mph (177,000 kph). Hubble caught some glam shots over the weekend from a distance of 260...
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This combination of Oct. 8, 2019, photos shows the Nobel Prize winners in Physics, from left, James Peebles in Princeton, N.J., Didier Queloz in London and Michel Mayor in Madrid. Peebles, an emeritus professor at Princeton University, won for his theoretical discoveries in cosmology. Swiss star-gazers Mayor, and Queloz, both of the University of Geneva, were honored for finding an exoplanet — a planet outside our solar system — that orbits a sun-like star, the Nobel committee said. (AP Photo)
October 08, 2019 - 1:12 pm
STOCKHOLM (AP) — A Canadian American cosmologist and two Swiss scientists won this year's Nobel Prize in Physics on Tuesday for exploring the evolution of the universe and discovering a new kind of planet, with implications for that nagging question: Does life exist only on Earth? Canadian-born...
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Ulf Danielsson, member of the Nobel committee talks during the announcement of the winners of the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics during news conference at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm, Sweden, on Tuesday Oct. 8, 2019. The 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics is awarded to James Peebles, Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz. (Claudio Bresciani / TT via AP)
October 08, 2019 - 9:03 am
STOCKHOLM (AP) — The Latest on the Nobel Prize in Physics (all times local): 2:30 p.m. A University of Cambridge astronomer says the work that earned three scientists the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics "highlights astronomy as the grandest of the environmental sciences." Emeritus Professor Martin Rees...
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FILE - This July 23, 2008 file image made available by NASA shows the planet Saturn, as seen from the Cassini spacecraft. Twenty new moons have been found around Saturn, giving the ringed planet a total of 82, scientists said Monday, Oct. 7, 2019. (NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute via AP, File)
October 07, 2019 - 5:27 pm
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The solar system has a new winner in the moon department. Twenty new moons have been found around Saturn, giving the ringed planet a total of 82, scientists said Monday. That beats Jupiter and its 79 moons. "It was fun to find that Saturn is the true moon king," said...
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In this Oct. 3, 2019, image released by the JAXA, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, the rover MINERVA-II2 is captured by the wide-angle optical navigation camera (ONC-W2) immediately after separation. Radio-waves are also being received from MINERVA-II2. Japan’s space agency says its Hayabusa2 spacecraft has released a small rover that will land on the surface of an asteroid as part its final mission before heading back to Earth. (JAXA/Chiba Institute of Technology via AP)
October 03, 2019 - 6:54 am
TOKYO (AP) — Japan’s Hayabusa2 spacecraft released a small rover on Thursday that will land on the surface of an asteroid as part its final mission before heading back to Earth, Japan’s space agency said. The Minerva-II2 rover began a slow descent to the asteroid Ryugu, the Japan Aerospace...
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September 28, 2019 - 10:29 pm
BOCA CHICA VILLAGE, Texas (AP) — Elon Musk has unveiled a SpaceX spacecraft designed to carry a crew and cargo to the moon, Mars or anywhere else in the solar system and land back on Earth perpendicularly. In a livestreamed speech from SpaceX's launch facility near the southern tip of Texas, Musk...
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