At the 47th annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences in National Harbor, Maryland, scientists of NASA’s Mars Rover Curiosity mission presented the results of new analyzes of the Martian site called Garden City. It’s an area visited in March 2015 that turned out to be very interesting from the geological point of view because of its chemical diversity and for its mineral veins, which protrude from the rocks they formed on.
The biggest update made so far to the software that runs Curiosity’s Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument considerably enhanceed it. In fact, it allowed an improvement in the interpretation of the collected data making it more sensitive to a wider range of possible compositions of the Martian rocks.
An article published in the journal “Science” describes the study of the first gamma-ray emitting pulsar discovered outside the Milky Way. Cataloged as PSR J0540-6919, it’s part of an area full of stars known as the Tarantula Nebula or 30 Doradus within the Large Magellanic Cloud, a small satellite galaxy of the Milky Way. The gamma rays emission from this pulsar was identified by the LAT (Large Area Telescope), one of the instruments of the Fermi gamma-ray space telescope.
At the 47th Annual Meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences in National Harbor, Maryland, the discovery of a celestial body called for now only V774104 was announced. Using the Subaru Telescope in Hawaii, a team led by Scott Sheppard of the Carnegie Institution for Science and Chad Trujillo of the Gemini Observatory in Hawaii discovered what seems the most distant object yet detected in the solar system being about 15.5 billion kilometers (about 9.5 billion miles) from the Sun, about three times Pluto and about 103 times that of Earth.
At the 47th Annual Meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences in National Harbor, Maryland, A research was presented about Phobos, a moon of Mars. Terry Hurford of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center led a team of scientists who analyzed the grooves on Phobos surface. The conclusion is that these are the first signs of structural failure that will lead to the destruction of this moon.
NASA’s New Horizons mission team is presenting the latest findings on the dwarf planet Pluto at the 47th Annual Meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences in National Harbor, Maryland. The data collected by the spacecraft during its July 14, 2015 flyby made it possible to identify possible cryovolcanoes. Data on small moons of Pluto are limited but suggest more and more that at least Cerberus and Hydra are the result of the merger of two or more asteroids.