SPACE TRAVEL
Iran Takes First Step to Send Man to Space
Tehran (FNA) Jan 31, 2013 – Sending a biocapsule to the space and retrieving it successfully was Iran’s first step on the path to sending a human to the space, Iran’s Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi said after his agency announced on Monday that it had sent a monkey to the orbit, brought it back to the Earth and retrieved the animal and the relevant data successfully. “Sending Explorer and retrieving it was the first s … more

extra extra newspaperMERCURY RISING
Mercury’s crust likely made of magnesium-rich basalt
Washington DC (SPX) Jan 31, 2013 – With both x-ray and gamma-ray spectrometers, the MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry and Ranging probe (MESSENGER), which entered orbit around Mercury in 2011, is well equipped for carrying out a detailed compositional analysis of Mercury’s crust, the understanding of which could help determine the nature of the planet’s formation, and of its volcanic past. Using spectrometric … more

MARSDAILY
Ridges on Mars suggest ancient flowing water
Providence RI (SPX) Jan 31, 2013 – Networks of narrow ridges found in impact craters on Mars appear to be the fossilized remnants of underground cracks through which water once flowed, according to a new analysis by researchers from Brown University. The study, in press in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, bolsters the idea that the subsurface environment on Mars once had an active hydrology and could be a good plac … more

DEEP IMPACT
Russia to use ballistic missiles to fight off asteroid threat
Moscow (Voice of Russia) Jan 31, 2013 – Russia is planning to use intercontinental ballistic missiles to deliver destroyer spacecraft to celestial bodies that pose a threat to Earth, Deputy Chief Designer of the Makeyev State Rocket Center Sergei Molchanov said during the annual Korolyov Readings forum currently under way in Moscow. Russian scientists suggest using a device called Kapkan to solve the problem of destroying … more

TECH SPACE
Space Station Crew Uses Laser Channel to Beam Data
Moscow (RIA Novosti) Jan 31, 2013 – Russian astronauts onboard the International Space Station (ISS) have transferred scientific data using a laser communication channel for the first time in international practice, the Federal Space Agency Roscosmos said on Tuesday. The information was transferred through the earth’s atmosphere at a rate of 125 megabytes per second from an onboard laser terminal, the agency said. The … more