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Exploration

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Wed, December 6 2017

How Iceland Helps us Understand Saturn’s Icy Moon

This past August, CEPS scientists traveled to Iceland to study geologic features known as pit chains, which form in a similar way to pit chains on Saturn’s icy moon, Enceladus.

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Saturn's Satellite Enceladus
Fri, December 1 2017

Celebrating Moments of Ingenuity

This month, the Smithsonian has been highlighting moments of ingenuity—trendsetters, groundbreakers, and individuals whose work embodies the spirit of innovation. As part of the Smithsonian Ingenuity Festival, the National Air and Space Museum celebrated the next generation of space and aviation pioneers, and those in history who paved the way.

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Ingenuity Festival
Thu, November 30 2017

The Fun of Finding Exoplanets

Using satellites and robotic rovers, we’ve learned quite a few details about the various planets orbiting our Sun. But what about other stars? What are their planets like? How weird do they get? It turns out, pretty weird.

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Kepler Mission
Wed, November 29 2017

Hydrogen-Powered Cars Hitting the Road

Sustainable energy has been at the heart of modern innovations large and small, from efficient light bulbs in living rooms to solar panels powering buildings. One of the newest breakthroughs in energy technology can often be found zipping around the streets in front of the Department of Energy (DOE) in Washington, DC—a car powered by hydrogen fuel cells.

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A fuel cell car being filled at a hydrogen pump.
Fri, November 24 2017

Planet Hunting with the Kepler Space Telescope

Thanks to the Kepler Space Telescope, we now know the answer to a longstanding question in astronomy: how common are planetary systems around stars? Quite common, it turns out. In the relatively small patch of sky that Kepler studied, most of the stars had planets orbiting them. Scientists now believe that there are more planets than stars in our Milky Way galaxy.

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The Kepler Mission
Tue, November 14 2017

Microgravity Science Experiments

Just like you conduct experiments in your science class, astronauts do experiments while in space. The microgravity of space allows astronauts to carry out experiments that would not be possible in the gravity of Earth. There are more than 300 experiments currently happening aboard the International Space Station (ISS).

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Astronaut Kate Rubins
Fri, October 20 2017

5 Things to Know About the Orionid Meteor Shower

Hoping to catch a view of the Orionid meteor shower tonight? Here are the five things you need to know from the astronomy team at the Phoebe Waterman Haas Public Observatory.

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Telescopic observing draws young visitors
Mon, October 16 2017

Gravity and Light: When Neutron Stars Collide

For the first time ever, on August 17, 2017, astronomers detected the collision of two neutron stars. Not satisfied with that, they caught the cosmic smashup using both gravitational waves and light – another breakthrough.

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Illustration of merging neutron stars.
Tue, October 3 2017

Sputnik and the Space Age at 60

Sputnik, the world’s first human-made satellite of the Earth, was launched on October 4, 1957, marking the beginning of the Space Age and the modern world in which we live today.

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Sputnik Model in the Boeing Milestones of Flight Hall
Fri, September 15 2017

Our Favorite Saturn Discoveries from Cassini 

At the end of the NASA Cassini spacecraft's 13-year mission, National Air and Space Museum scientists and educators are reflecting on what this mission has meant to them.

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Our Favorite Saturn Discoveries from Cassini 

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Cassini Grand Finale

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