Lab Notes

Mining for solar storms

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In his recent book Accessory to War, astronomer Neil deGrasse Tyson and coauthor Avis Lang document the historical relationship between science and the military,...

Bouncing off the satellites

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On Oct. 30, NASA finally retired the Kepler space telescope, the prolific planet-hunter that has been scanning the skies for the past nine years....

Pimping science news

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Science journalism has been declining for years, under the same media pressures that have made local news an endangered species. Boulder County is one...

Probing nearby stars

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Four miles from the launch pad, standing on the roof of the 44-story vehicle assembly building where NASA constructed the space shuttles, I hold...

Prospecting nearby worlds

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The past year has been fantastic for commercial spaceflight, with Elon Musk’s SpaceX successfully launching 18 Falcon-9 rockets in 2017. It now seems almost...

Diving into Saturn

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I finally arrive on the Caltech campus in Pasadena, California, around 3:30 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 15 to bear witness to the final gravitational dance...

Blocking out the sun

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As seen from Earth, a solar eclipse takes place when the moon passes between the sun and Earth, partially or totally obscuring the sun....

Akatsuki returns from the dead

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It is Dec. 7, 2015. We’re in Sagamihara, Japan, a little southwest of Tokyo. On a clear day like today, you can just make...

The thundering launch of GOES-R

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As the Atlas V rocket’s inferno lit up the night sky early in the evening of Nov. 19, 2016, it was as if the...

Colonizing Mars the SpaceX way

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OK, so who is ready to go live on Mars? I saw a few hands go up there in the Boulder Weekly readership. Now...

The OSIRIS-REx mission: To Bennu and back

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On Sept. 8, 2016, Dr. Vicky Hamilton watched as NASA’s OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification Security, Regolith Explorer) lifted clear of Cape Canaveral’s...

Catching the solar eclipse

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More than a century ago, Albert Einstein proposed a new theory of gravity, suggesting that concentrations of matter warp the underlying fabric of space,...