NASA Highlights Drought, Mars, Arctic Warming at Science Conference

Long ago, in the largest canyon system in our solar system, vibrations from “marsquakes” shook soft sediments that had accumulated in Martian lakes. The shaken sediments formed features that now appear as a series of low hills apparent in a geological map based on NASA images. The map was released today by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). This map of […]

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NASA’s plan to nudge an asteroid

In the sci-fi movie Armageddon, astronauts intercept a killer asteroid heading for Earth, saving mankind. NASA is taking the first step to develop the technology to do just that, by planning a mission to slightly alter an asteroid’s orbit. The mission will also serve as an initial test of a solar-electric propulsion system and other technologies essential for a manned […]

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A new water world

Saturn’s ice-covered moon Enceladus could harbor a warm-water ocean beneath its frozen surface, opening up new possibilities for life beyond Earth. Enceladus has fascinated astronomers since 2005, when NASA’s Cassini probe caught geysers on the moon’s south pole spewing out plumes of salty water. Water that is thought to have originated in an ocean buried beneath the moon’s 25-mile-thick ice […]

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Jupiter’s Destructive Path

Earth may owe its existence to the planet Jupiter. New research shows that the giant planet played a key role in the formation of the solar system by barreling through it like a cosmic wrecking ball, destroying existing planets and creating debris that coalesced into new ones, including ours. Astronomers began examining this theory after finding that virtually all of […]

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Global fossil-fuel emissions predicted to decline for 2015

Annual global carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels could drop slightly in 2015, according to a report from the Global Carbon Project led by a Stanford University researcher. This surprising result contrasts with the rapid growth in emissions before 2014, underlining the need for action to stabilize and permanently lower global CO2 emissions, the researchers conclude. “In 2014, global CO2 […]

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Record-Breaking Heatwave Causes Intense Arctic wildfires

Uncontrolled wildfires ravage the Arctic

More than 100 intense Arctic wildfires have ravaged the Arctic since June, with scientists describing them as “unprecedented.” Satellite images show huge clouds of smoke billowing across uninhabited Arctic land in Greenland, Siberia and parts of Alaska. The wildfires come after the planet experienced the hottest June on record and is on track to experience the hottest July on record, […]

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