After ten months of space travel, NASA’s DART spacecraft arrived at the asteroid Didymos, targeted the moonlet Dimorphos, and successfully flung itself at the surface. Multiple observations confirm that the system brightened and even managed to resolve a cloud of debris. Plus, rocket launches, an update on the SLS, some broken physics, and International Observe the Moon Night.
As we return from our summer hiatus, we are back with a rundown of some of the stories that came out during the break. On the planetary front, JWST has been taking amazing images and learning about exoplanets. On the astrophysics front, we’ve got stories on dark matter and Betelgeuse. And there were thirty orbital launches, including a whole lot of Starlinks… but not including Artemis.
An analysis of the craters on Bennu’s surface provides evidence that the rubble pile asteroid is protected from smaller impacts by the boulders scattered on the surface. Plus, the SLS Wet Dress Rehearsal, dwarf galaxies around M81, and this week in rocket history, we look back at the X-15 hypersonic plane.
In a joint discovery announced by the Subaru and Hubble telescopes, researchers have captured images of a gas giant protoplanet whose distant formation supports the disk instability theory. Plus, galaxies, more galaxies, a couple of rocket launches, and updates on JWST and SLS.
The first SLS was rolled out of the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) High Bay 3 on the Crawler Transporter on March 17, 2022, and is the first lunar rocket to emerge from the VAB since Apollo 17’s Saturn V in 1972. Plus, an asteroid impact, climate change, ancient volcanoes, spring on Mars, and a new Deep Sky Network dish.
For this week’s Rocket Roundup, we have exactly zero launches to cover. What’s up with that? In the meantime, we talk about Europa Clipper’s launch announcement, Blue Origin’s attempt to be a part of Artemis, what a NOTAM is, and how we use it. Plus, this week in rocket history, we look back at the launch of the Chandra X-ray Observatory.