Skip to main content

Vote Now! Best Space Stories of the Week – Oct. 6, 2013

Supervolcanoes on Mars, a Dazzling Comet and NASA's Shutdown Status

NASA/JPL-Caltech

Last week two private spaceflight companies made big news with successful missions, the government shutdown sent 97 percent of NASA's workforce home, possible supervolcanoes were spotted on Mars and potentially dazzling Comet ISON flew by the Red Planet.

FIRST STOP: Private Cygnus Spacecraft Makes Historic 1st Rendezvous with Space Station

Private Cygnus Spacecraft Makes Historic 1st Rendezvous with Space Station

NASA TV

A new commercial spacecraft built to haul cargo to the International Space Station for NASA made its debut delivery to the orbiting lab early Sunday (Sept. 29), capping a major test flight for its builder Orbital Sciences Corp., which described the space rendezvous as "epic."[Full Story]

NEXT:SpaceX Launches Next-Generation Private Falcon 9 Rocket on Big Test Flight

SpaceX Launches Next-Generation Private Falcon 9 Rocket on Big Test Flight

SpaceX

The private spaceflight company SpaceX launched the first of its new-and-improved Falcon 9 rockets from the California coast Sunday (Sept. 29), an ambitious test flight that also marked the company's first flight from the West Coast. [Full Story]

NEXT: Government Shutdown In Space: NASA Astronauts Safe on Space Station

Clouds On Alien Planet Mapped for 1st Time

NASA/JPL-Caltech/MIT

Scientists have created the first-ever cloud map of a planet beyond our solar system.[Full Story]

NEXT:Giant Impact That Formed the Moon Blew Off Earth's Atmosphere

NASA's Next Mars Probe Cleared for Launch Despite Government Shutdown

LASP

NASA's Maven spacecraft should get off the ground on time, no matter how long the government shutdown lasts. [Full Story]

NEXT: NASA May Slam Captured Asteroid Into Moon (Eventually)

NASA May Slam Captured Asteroid Into Moon (Eventually)

NASA

Decades from now, people on Earth may be gearing up for an unprecedented celestial spectacle — the intentional smashing of an asteroid into the moon. [Full Story]

NEXT: New Asteroid-Capture Mission Idea: Go After Earth's 'Minimoons'

New Asteroid-Capture Mission Idea: Go After Earth's 'Minimoons'

NASA

Capturing an asteroid may not be as difficult or expensive as NASA had thought.[Full Story]

NEXT: Clouds On Alien Planet Mapped for 1st Time

Government Shutdown In Space: NASA Astronauts Safe on Space Station

NASA

The U.S. government shutdown beginning Oct. 1 shut down much of NASA, but the space agency is taking special measures to safeguard American astronauts currently living on the International Space Station. [Full Story]

NEXT:NASA's Next Mars Probe Cleared for Launch Despite Government Shutdown

Giant Impact That Formed the Moon Blew Off Earth's Atmosphere

NASA/JPL-Caltech

The moon came into existence after several planet-size space bodies smashed into the nascent Earth one after the other, with the final one actually forming our satellite, while several impacts repeatedly blew off our planet’s atmosphere, according to a new study.[Full Story]

NEXT: Beer Made with Moon Dust Blends Brewer and Spacesuit Maker Skills

Beer Made with Moon Dust Blends Brewer and Spacesuit Maker Skills

Dogfish Head

A beer brewed with moon dust might sound like a lunatic idea, but it's now real thanks to a Delaware brewery and the contractor that created NASA's Apollo spacesuits. [Full Story]

NEXT: Potentially Dazzling Comet ISON Spotted from Mars by Spacecraft

Potentially Dazzling Comet ISON Spotted from Mars by Spacecraft

NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A probe in orbit around Mars spotted Comet ISON — a possible "comet of the century" — as it flew past the Red Planet on its way to give the sun a close shave come November.[Full Story]

NEXT: Explosive Supervolcanoes May Have Rocked Ancient Mars

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at: community@space.com.