Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Space Highlights - February 15, 2017

February 15, 2017

India successfully launched a record breaking 104 satellites aboard a single launch booster this week, including 88 Earth observation microsatellites from the U.S. start-up Planet Labs, as well as microsatellites from Israel, Kazakhstan, Switzerland, and the United Arab Emirates.

Arianespace conducted its first Ariane 5 launch of the year, placing the SKY Brasil-1 and Telkom-3S satellites on a trajectory towards geostationary orbit.

NASA has identified three candidate landing sites for its planned 2020 Mars rover mission.

Researchers examining data from NASA's Dawn spacecraft are puzzling as to why they have discovered only one ice volcano of the surface of the dwarf planet Ceres.  A leading theory is that other cryovolcanoes must have once existed, but have since crumbled away due to the warmer conditions that exist at Ceres - as opposed to moons and other bodies where cryovolcanoes have been found further away from the sun.

A team of researchers has released a dataset documenting more than 100 likely exoplanets that need to be independently confirmed.  The team has cataloged observations from 1,624 stars, all within 325 light years from Earth.

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