mars (8)Ice Cloud Heralds Fall at Titan’s South Pole
Greenbelt MD (SPX) Apr 15, 2013 – An ice cloud taking shape over Titan’s south pole is the latest sign that the change of seasons is setting off a cascade of radical changes in the atmosphere of Saturn’s largest moon. Made from an unknown ice, this type of cloud has long hung over Titan’s north pole, where it is now fading, according to observations made by the Composite Infrared Spectrometer (CIRS) on NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. … more

Can One Buy the Right to Name a Planet?
Paris, France (SPX) Apr 15, 2013 – In the light of recent events, where the possibility of buying the rights to name exoplanets has been advertised, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) wishes to inform the public that such schemes have no bearing on the official naming process. The IAU wholeheartedly welcomes the public’s interest to be involved in recent discoveries, but would like to strongly stress the importance … more

Ecuador to launch first homemade satellite
Quito (AFP) April 13, 2013 – Ecuador will launch its first satellite into space from China in two weeks, President Rafael Correa announced Saturday. “It’s not a satellite bought in another country, it’s a satellite made in Ecuador,” Correa said proudly during his weekly address of the homegrown engineering team. The “Pegaso” (pegasus) nanosatellite will be launched from China aboard an unmanned rocket at 0513 GMT on … more

NASA spacecraft may have spotted pieces of Soviet spacecraft on Mars
Moscow (UPI) Apr 12, 2013 – Russian space enthusiasts say a NASA orbiter may have captured images of pieces of a Soviet spacecraft that made a soft landing on Mars more than 40 years ago. They say the evidence of the Mars 3 mission, the first successful soft landing on the Red Planet, is in images taken in 2007 by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. NASA reported their claims Friday. “While following … more