Life as we know it on Earth is possible because of water. Hence, the presence of water on our neighbouring ‘red planet’, Mars, was an important discovery. Taking forward the search for water on Mars, scientists from the Luleå University of Technology, Sweden, Sharda University, India, Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra, Spain and Centro de Astrobiología, Spain, have now discovered the widespread presence of liquid water on Mars using the latest technology.
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Space missions come with an unprecedented excitement of open a Pandora’s box of unknown facts, mysteries and phenomenons. It is hardly a surprise that New Horizons, NASA’s mission to explore Pluto and beyond has caused a great excitement in the field of planetary science. Launched in 2006, New Horizons has already provided mankind with the most intimate images of Pluto till date and is now cruising towards the Kuiper Belt beyond our Solar System. Read all that you should know about this space mission, its latest findings and its future stops as it progresses toward new horizons of space in an interview with Prof. Henry Throop.
Asteroids bring an image of shooting stars streaking across the sky. But did you know, they were the reason behind one of the biggest mass extinction events in the history of life? Often harmless, asteroids have been striking the earth for millions of years and there are still millions out there, wandering in outer space. On the occasion of International Asteroid Day, let us learn about these incredible space rocks and why it is important to track and study them.
ISRO hit a century of sorts with its launch of 104 satellites in one go. This has been a world record and everyone is proud of ISRO for what it has achieved. Have you wondered what enabled this scientific and technological achievement? Much of the ground work happened at Indian Institute of Science in primarily three scientific and engineering departments - aerospace, materials and electrical communication engineering. Aerospace Engineering helped in building and launching the satellites. Materials Engineering, then Metallurgy helped in arriving at the right composites, alloys and materials for the outer cover for launch vehicles and satellites that helped them to weather extreme conditions. The Electrical Communication Engineering Department helped with the technology to control and communicate with the satellites. It is interesting to note that all three were established during 1940s and before India became independent in 1947. In many ways from the science and technology to building capacity, IISc has been playing a key role.
The 6th of August 2012 is a date to be remembered in NASA’s history. On this day, it’s most successful Mars rover, Curiosity, landed on the Martian soil with the distinction of being the most precise landing in the history of Martian exploration. Curiosity is more than just a rover; it is a mobile laboratory that has uncovered a lot of previously unknown facts about the red planet. Having known that the Martian environment was, at one time, well suited to support microbial life, Curiosity is now busy searching for traces of microbial life on the planet.