US and World News

TESS's First Year of Science - Sky & Telescope
NASA's TESS satellite has just completed its first year of planet hunting, and it's delivering results, including several super-Earths.

Asteroid bigger than Empire State Building is passing by Earth - 1011now
In cosmic terms, it’s going to pass relatively close to Earth on August 10. It will come within about 5 million miles.

The Light Sail is Working... It's Working! - Universe Today
Great news for the Planetary Society and all of their supporters. LightSail 2's solar sail is working, and has raised the spacecraft's orbit by 2 km.

Chile And Telescopes Are A Match Made In Heaven - NPR
The South American country is home to the Andes Mountains and the Atacama Desert, places that have some of the stillest and driest air in the world. That makes them ideal for astronomy.

Biologists reverse engineer the microtubules that make up cell walls and spindles -
Imagine standing in a lumberyard and being asked to build a house—without blueprints or instructions of any kind. The materials are all in front of you, but that doesn't mean you have the first idea how to get from point A to point B.

New map of the Milky Way provides more evidence that it's warped and twisted - CNN
Observing and studying our own galaxy, the Milky Way, can be a bit like trying to take in the view of an entire forest while standing inside it. But instead of trees obscuring the view, it's gas and dust.

Mission studying sun named for MSU grad surprises NASA with 50% more data than expected -
The Parker Solar Probe is the first NASA spacecraft to be named for a living person, who just happens to be Michigan State University graduate Eugene Parker. The U.S. space agency says it received 22 gigabytes of science data back on May 6, which is 50 percen…

This Alien Planet Is So Hot It Bleeds Metal - ExtremeTech
Even by the standards of a hot Jupiter, exoplanet WASP-121b is absolutely scorching.

Turning water into ice in the quantum realm -
When you pop a tray of water into the freezer, you get ice cubes. Now, researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder and the University of Toronto have achieved a similar transition using clouds of ultracold atoms.

Quantum entanglement in chemical reactions? Now there's a way to find out -
Scientists have long suspected that a quantum phenomenon might play a role in photosynthesis and other chemical reactions of nature, but don't know for sure because such a phenomenon is so difficult to identify.

New species of rain frogs discovered - Fox News
Eleven new species of rain frogs have been discovered in Ecuador.

Fearing cougars more than wolves, Yellowstone elk manage threats from both predators -
Wolves are charismatic, conspicuous, and easy to single out as the top predator affecting populations of elk, deer, and other prey animals. However, a new study has found that the secretive cougar is actually the main predator influencing the movement of elk …

Shining (star)light on the search for life -
In the hunt for life on other worlds, astronomers scour over planets that are light-years away. They need ways to identify life from afar—but what counts as good evidence?

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