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SES in the 1960s

The Space Environment Simulator

One of the coolest (literally!) facilities at NASA Goddard is the Space Environment Simulator (SES). It’s a massive thermal vacuum chamber, which is used to expose spacecraft and their components to environmental conditions like those they will experience in space. Image Credit: Maggie Masetti From this page on unique Goddard … Continue Reading →


Artist's Impression of Swift

Happy Birthday, Swift!

This is our third Happy Birthday post for a satellite in the last year or so – which is pretty cool actually, to have satellites that are hitting significant milestones and have had the longevity to still be doing great science. We had Fermi’s 5th birthday in August 2013, followed … Continue Reading →


Imagine the Universe Covers

Imagine the Universe

So the big news – that I’ll go ahead and put up front – is that the Imagine the Universe! site just got a big update! Go check it out! It’s ok, I’ll wait right here while you do. It’ll even open in a different tab/window! http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov In a nutshell, … Continue Reading →


V407 Cygni

Novae in Different Lights

In part one of this series, we talked to researcher Laura Chomiuk about the scientific mysteries of novae V959 Mon. She has collaborated with two Blueshifters, Koji Mukai, and Tommy Nelson, who also study novae, but primarily at X-ray energies. We chatted with Tommy to learn more about his research … Continue Reading →


20141110_184032-1

Contest: 3rd Annual Halloween Costume Contest Results

Thank you so much for your entries for our space/science Halloween costume contest! We were really sorry to not be able to hold the contest last year, and this year, it took us a bit to get the go-ahead. Though we aren’t able to have kids participate at this time, … Continue Reading →


Carl Clark

Mr. Clark Goes to Goddard

Occasional Blueshift blogger Amber Straughn is currently working on Hubble’s 25th anniversary celebration. Currently working for her as an intern is Carl Clark. Carl has written the following blog for us about himself, getting to work on Hubble, and his general love for NASA. Enjoy! I am Carl Clark, a … Continue Reading →


Nova V959 Mon

A “Noval” Mystery

The mystery around Nova V959 Mon was recently deciphered with the use of multiwavelength light – including radio, X-ray, and gamma-ray. First off, what is a nova? It’s basically a huge thermonuclear explosion that’s caused when a dense white dwarf star pulls material from an orbiting companion star onto itself. … Continue Reading →


Titan's Atmosphere

The “Air” Up There

When NASA Goddard scientists Martin Cordiner and Conor Nixon took a look at the chemical make-up of the atmosphere of Titan using a millimeter wave telescope, what they found was surprising. Cordiner led an international team in a study of Saturn’s moon using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), a … Continue Reading →


Finished product

SpaceCrafts: Realistic Rockets and Other Adventures in Space Costuming for Kids…

Last year at Halloween, Dirk Schoellner tweeted a shot of one of his sons dressed up for Halloween – as the James Webb Space Telescope costume. We, of course loved it, so the Schoellners did a tutorial for us about how they built it. This was not their first year … Continue Reading →


On October 8, 2014, active regions on the sun gave it the appearance of a jack-o'-lantern. This image is a blend of 171 and 193 ångström light as captured by the Solar Dynamics Observatory. Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

Spooky Astronomy, part 5

Welcome back for Spooky Astronomy! Over the years, we’ve shared our favorite Halloween-ish images to get into the spirit [no pun intended] of the season! Past Spooky Astronomy posts: 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013. Here are a few fresh images for this year: Jack-o’-lantern! It was nice of the sun to … Continue Reading →


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