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Vote Now! Best Space Stories of the Week - Sept. 1, 2013

Curiosity Drives Solo, Top-Secret Spy Satellite Launches & More

NASA/MSFC/David Olive

Last week a 3D-printed rocket part passed the biggest NASA test yet, America's largest rocket launched a top-secret spy satellite and Mars Rover Curiosity drove solo for the first time.

FIRST STOP: On Giant Blue Alien Planet, It Rains Molten Glass

On Giant Blue Alien Planet, It Rains Molten Glass

NASA, ESA, M. Kornmesser

Although planet HD189733b was discovered eight years ago, astronomers are still trying to figure out more about the planet's environment. For example, it's blue, but its environment is quite different from Earth. [Full Story]

NEXT: 3D-Printed Rocket Part Passes Biggest NASA Test Yet (Video)

3D-Printed Rocket Part Passes Biggest NASA Test Yet (Video)

NASA/MSFC/David Olive

The biggest 3D printed rocket part built to date survived a hot-fire test, generating 10 times more thrust than any previous injector made by 3D printing, the space agency announced.[Full Story]

NEXT: Earth Life Likely Came from Mars, Study Suggests

Earth Life Likely Came from Mars, Study Suggests

NASA/ESA

Evidence is building that Earth life originated on Mars and was brought to our planet aboard a meteorite, says biochemist Steven Benner of The Westheimer Institute for Science and Technology in Florida. [Full Story]

NEXT: Air Force Study Reveals Threats to US Space Activities

Air Force Study Reveals Threats to US Space Activities

Pat Corkery, United Launch Alliance

A new U.S. Air Force report highlights the growing threats to America's space activities, including the congestion of Earth orbit and the increasingly easy access to space for other nations. [Full Story]

NEXT: The Scoop on Space Poop: How Astronauts Go Potty

The Scoop on Space Poop: How Astronauts Go Potty

NASA.

From rouge drops of pee to astronaut potty training, see how spaceflyers of the past and present deal with all-too-human toilet troubles. [Full Story]

NEXT: Mars Rover Curiosity Drives Solo for First Time

Mars Rover Curiosity Drives Solo for First Time

NASA/JPL-Caltech

After obeying orders on the Red Planet for more than a year, NASA's Mars rover Curiosity has finally gotten its first taste of freedom. [Full Story]

NEXT: Is NASA's Plan to Lasso an Asteroid Really Legal?

NASA

NASA's ambitious asteroid-capture mission is seemingly being blueprinted with little dialogue about whether or not it is actually legal. [Full Story]

NEXT: China's First Moon Rover Will Launch By End of the Year

China's First Moon Rover Will Launch By End of the Year

Courtesy: Dragon in Space

Chinese space officials announced Wednesday (Aug. 28) that they plan to launch the country's first moon rover at the end of this year, Xinhua reported. [Full Story]

NEXT: America's Largest Rocket Launches Top-Secret Spy Satellite

America's Largest Rocket Launches Top-Secret Spy Satellite

Pat Corkery/United Launch Alliance

A Delta 4 Heavy rocket lifted off the pad at California's Vandenberg Air Force Base Wednesday, carrying a classified payload to orbit for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office. [Full Story]

NEXT: Saturn Moon Titan Sports Thick Icy Shell & Bizarre Interior

Saturn Moon Titan Sports Thick Icy Shell & Bizarre Interior

NASA/JPL

The tough icy shell of Saturn's largest moon, Titan, is apparently far stronger than previously thought, and hides a bizarre interior, including a potential ocean, scientists say. [Full Story]

NEXT: Oldest Sun-Like Star Previews Sun's Fate

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