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ESA

  1. Space

    Astronauts To Test Super-Sensitive “Touchy-Feely” Joystick In Space, Probably Not A Euphemism

    After making a whole lot of NASA-related dick jokes last weekend, I'm going to avoid the easy punchline here and just stick to facts. This summer, astronauts on the International Space Station will test a wearable joystick that might one day allow them to control robots on other words from orbit. Also, you strap the joystick to your waist. Because.

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  2. Space

    Rosetta Has Finally Spotted Her Comet, Sent Back First Images

    Pictures taken by Rosetta earlier this week confirm that the ESA's little spacecraft that could is right on track for her rendezvous in August with 67P/Churymov-Gerasimenko. For the first time, Rosetta's OSIRIS camera has captured images of the comet on which she will attempt her unprecedented landing.

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  3. Space

    Check Out This Interactive 3D Visualization Of Rosetta’s Journey Through Space

    Now that the unmanned spacecraft Rosetta has woken up and contacted the ESA, she can begin her ultimate mission of flying alongside and eventually landing on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.. Want to watch her do it? Well, you can't, because she's in space. But you can track her progress through our galaxy with this interactive map.

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  4. Space

    ESA’s Unmanned Spacecraft Rosetta Has AWOKEN TO FULFILL HER DESTINY

    Citizens of Earth, the Rosetta spacecraft awoke from her slumber at the last minute after an agonizing wait yesterday. If you ever wanted to watch grown geniuses weep for joy, this is your chance.

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  5. Space

    The ESA’s Rosetta Is Set to Wake up AS WE TYPE: The Future Is Now! [Livestream]

    How are you spending your federal bank holiday? If you're just lying around on your couch watching Sleepy Hollow then cut it out, ya dummy! You could be participating in space history! That's literally the best kind of history!

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  6. Space

    Up Late or Live Somewhere Where 4:12AM EST Isn’t Super Early? Watch the ESA’s Gaia Launch Live

    Depending on where you live, the ESA's Gaia spacecraft will launch either at a perfectly reasonable time tomorrow afternoon or at an unacceptably early hour of the morning. If you happen to be in an area where you won't have to wake up before sunrise, watch Gaia launch live on its mission to create a better map of our galaxy.

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  7. Space

    European Satellite’s Fall from Orbit Was Harmless, Proving We Can Do Math

    To the Internet's credit, no one seemed all that concerned about the European Space Agency's falling satellite over the weekend, despite Fox News running a headline that it might land in your backyard and telling you who to sue. It burned up harmlessly in the atmosphere as expected—the satellite, not Fox News. Sorry.

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  8. Space

    A Satellite Will Fall from Orbit over the Weekend, Please Don’t Overreact, Internet

    The European Space Agency is expecting the Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer to fall out of orbit this weekend after hanging out up there since 2009. We are expecting people to freak out and worry that one ton of science is going to fall on their heads. Spoiler: it's not, and we've got the math to prove it.

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  9. Space

    The ESA’s Rosetta Is About To Complete Its’ Ten-Year Mission

    The ESA's Rosetta spacecraft is boldly going where no man has gone before - into comet territory. After being placed in a space-coma for a whole decade, the Rosetta is finally scheduled to wake up and complete the task for which is was made - in just 100 days.

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  10. Space

    Too Beautiful for This Universe: Herschel Space Telescope Shuts Down for Good

    It's with great sadness today that we bring you news of the passing of the Herschel Space Observatory. After more than three years of dutiful service to astronomers and appreciators of the beauty of space, the telescope's supply of liquid helium coolant has run dry, and it is officially out of commission.

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  11. Space

    Hey, Everybody! Let’s Harpoon Some Space Garbage

    The amount of debris orbiting the Earth is alarming. It's a threat to both space science, and business -- space business. The European Space Agency just wrapped up its 6th European Conference on Space Debris to decide what to do about it. One of the ideas? Let's shoot harpoons and nets at the junk. How soon before Space Junkers is a show on the Discovery Channel?

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  12. Space

    Star Takes Less Than Three Hours to Orbit the Black Hole That’s Eating It [Video]

    Astronomers at the European Space Agency have found a binary star-and-black-hole that orbit one another once every 2.4 hours, making them the most swiftly orbiting binary objects ever recorded. Of course, the star -- a tiny red dwarf just 20% as massive as our own Sun-- is being actively consumed by the black hole, so this is less like traditional orbiting, like we do with the Sun, and more like watching a cat play with a wounded mouse on a cosmic scale. Keep reading to get a look at the ESA's animated rendering of the new fastest known orbit in action.

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  13. Space

    Nice Knowing You: Our Favorite Images From the Herschel Space Observatory

    The Herschel Space Observatory's mission to photograph the stars is winding down, so we wanted to take the chance to remember some of the finest images Herschel captured during its three-year tour of duty. Now, yes, some of these images are color corrected and touched up to highlight the more spectacular points contained within them -- like the star forming inside a galactic bubble eight times more massive than our sun. In our view, that doesn't make them any less valuable to astronomers studying them, which is the whole point. It also makes them way better eye-candy for the rest of us to gape at, so we're just going to be thankful for it, rather than nitpicky.

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  14. Space

    We Hardly Knew Ye: ESA’s Herschel Space Telescope Powering Down for Good

    Since it's launch in 2009, the European Space Agency's Herschel Space Telescope has treated us to some truly amazing images of space. All good things must come to an end, though, and the ESA's shiniest toy is just about out of time. Sometime in the next couple of weeks, the liquid helium tanks that provide coolant for the telescope's impressive instrumentation will run dry, marking the close of a good run for one of the most powerful instruments ever used to capture images of space.

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  15. Space

    NASA and ESA Think This Distorted Galaxy Looks Like a Space Invader

    Personally, I think it looks more like Black Manta's helmet than a Space Invader, but this image of a spiral galaxy taken with the Hubble Space Telescope sure looks like something other than a spiral galaxy. That's because the light from the "Space Invader" galaxy is being bent around a galaxy cluster called Abell 68. The process by which this happens helps astronomers see much further into deep space, but often results in distortions, though this is the first time it's resulted in a video game reference that we know of.

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