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Astronomers Find A Young Star With A Sweet Tooth

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Astronomers have made the sweetest discovery of all time. It’s not a new nebula shaped like a candy cane or the nougat filled center of the Milky Way, it’s a young star surrounded by sugar. Believe it or not, this isn’t just another neat little spacey find, it’s changing the way scientists look at the origins of life and also happens to be the most pun-tastic subject a science writer could hope for.

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The Romney Campaign Releases Their Platform For Space

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One of the biggest problems for NASA as a government agency is that their focus on human spaceflight seemingly changes with every new president. While presidents always try to act like they have the space agency’s best interests at heart, when it comes time to make the budgets, NASA seemingly has to fight tooth and claw to just keep it at a steady level. Well, this is an election year, and now the Republicans have released the 2012 GOP Republican Platform, which, interestingly enough, actually has a section talking about America’s space program. Don’t get too excited though, it’s about what you’d expect.

 America’s Future in Space: Continuing This Quest

The exploration of space has been a key part of U.S.global leadership and has supported innovation and ownership of technology. Over the last half century, in partnership with our aerospace industry, the work of NASA has helped define and strengthen our nation’s technological prowess. From building the world’s most powerful rockets to landing men on the Moon, sending robotic spacecraft throughout our solar system and beyond, building the International Space Station, and launching space-based telescopes that allow scientists to better understand our universe, NASA science and engineering have produced spectacular results. The technologies that emerged from those programs propelled our aerospace industrial base and directly benefit our national security, safety, economy, and quality of life. Through its achievements, NASA has inspired generations of Americans to study science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, leading to careers that drive our country’s technological and economic engines.

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China Joins The Race To Find Earth-Like Planets

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If you’ve heard a politician or any of the old space establishment talk about America’s place in spaceflight, then you’ve probably heard threats of China taking away our space superiority. China still has a lot of work to do if they want to match America and Russia’s achievements, but it looks like human spaceflight isn’t the only area they’re putting effort into. Now China is serious about the business of finding Earth-like exoplanets, and they’re pretty confident that they’ll find what they’re looking for.

According to The Daily Galaxy, Chinese astronomers have recently set up shop in Antarctica in an effort to find the life-bearing jewels of the galaxy. They have set up the first of three Antarctic Survey Telescopes in a prime location at Dome Argus, the highest point on the whole continent. Director of the Chinese Center for Antarctic Astronomy, Wang Lifan, is extremely optimistic about their chances.

Antarctica has the best conditions on Earth for astronomical observation, as it has very flat ground, a transparent atmosphere and little turbulence. The ground-based telescopes here will bring us precious information from the universe. We will send people there to retrieve observation data next spring. I hope we can find some likely candidates. It’s hard to say precisely how many, but I hope there are no less than 10.

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Help Build A Space Elevator On The Moon

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The Liftport Group is a company that has a pretty monumental task ahead of it. Grown out of a NASA study, Liftport has made its mission the development of a truly cheap and reusable way to bring humans and cargo to space, through elevators. While we haven’t gotten to a point technologically where Earth-bound space elevators would be feasible, Liftport says we are ready to do the next best thing, build one on the moon. Now through a Kickstarter campaign with the modest goal of $8,000, they are looking for your help to fund a company that could make a moon elevator a reality.

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A Goodbye To Neil Armstrong, The Most Important Man Who Ever Lived

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On July 21, 1969 a man named Neil Armstrong achieved something so big, so monumental, that more than forty years later humanity hasn’t come close to accomplishing anything which might eclipse it.

Yet even a man who has escaped the pull of Earth’s gravity can’t escape the inevitable doom of old age. This weekend on August 25th Neil Armstrong, the first human being to walk on the moon, died following complications from a heart bypass surgery he underwent on August 7th. He was 82 years old. His family released a statement announcing his passing and letting the rest of the world know that we’ve lost the most important man on Earth, or off it.

There have been other great achievements in the history of our species. Other men have been part of important firsts, made amazing discoveries. But it’s hard to think of any bigger than this one, an achievement so big it couldn’t even happen on our planet. It’s one thing to build a boat out of wood and sail to unknown lands, it’s another to launch yourself into the sky in an attempt to touch the lights above.

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Betelgeuse Looks Like A Star On The Verge Of Exploding

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If you’ve ever had an interest in astronomy, then you’ve probably seen an artist’s interpretation of a red supergiant star before. The ancient stars are usually depicted as giant red orbs that may be shown in the act of baking an alien planet or even eating one. They may be an angry shade of red and have some fancy set dressing, but for the most part, depictions of red supergiants are pretty similar to the look of our own Sun. Now, a new perspective on the red supergiant star Betelgeuse makes it look every bit the part of a star ready to explode.