China reveals its space plans through 2016

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Illustration depicts a Chinese Shenzhou vehicle approaching the Tiangong 1 space lab during orbital rendezvous and docking tests.

Over the next five years, China plans to launch space labs and manned ships and prepare to build space stations, according to a plan released Thursday that shows the country’s space program is gathering momentum.

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Russians hail the end of the space shuttle era

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A Russian Soyuz craft leaves the International Space Station.

Space officials in Russia are hailing the end of the space shuttle era as the beginning of the “Soyuz epoch.” Russian Soyuz craft will serve as the only way to get back and forth from the International Space Station, and NASA will be paying up to $63 million a seat for the ride for at least the next few years.

 

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Component Of Mothballs Is Present In Deep-space Clouds

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Also known as M42, the Orion Nebula’s glowing gas surrounds hot young stars at the edge of an immense interstellar molecular cloud some 1,500 light-years away.

Interstellar clouds, drifting through the unimaginable vastness of space, may be the stuff dreams are made of. But it turns out there’s an unexpectedly strange component in those clouds, and it’s not dreams but—mothballs?

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Space Shuttle Science Shows How 1908 Tunguska Explosion Was Caused By A Comet

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A comet is thought to have caused Tunguska explosion

The mysterious 1908 Tunguska explosion that leveled 830 square miles of Siberian forest was almost certainly caused by a comet entering the Earth’s atmosphere, says new Cornell University research. The conclusion is supported by an unlikely source: the exhaust plume from the NASA space shuttle launched a century later.

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