February 22nd, 2013
02:26 PM ET

Peter Gabriel hears his song played from the International Space Station

British singer Peter Gabriel got a brief serenade from a member of the International Space Station crew on Wednesday during a visit to Mission Control in Houston.

Canadian Chris Hadfield, Expedition 34's flight engineer, strummed a few chords of Gabriel's hit "In Your Eyes" during a nearly 12-minute chat with Gabriel and his family.

Hadfield told Gabriel that he recorded two songs in space. The first, co-written with his brother, is a "space Christmas carol" called "Jewel in the Night." The second, a space-to-Earth collaboration with Canadian band Barenaked Ladies, is called "I.S.S. (Is Somebody Singing)."

Click on the video above to hear Hadfield's performance.

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Filed under: In Space • People in Orbit
September 4th, 2012
02:21 PM ET

Up in the sky: 'Solar whip,' Northern Lights

Space geeks are agog over the above video, shot by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, depicting a beautiful whip-like solar filament stretching across the surface of the sun.

The video, which shows solar activity from August 6 to 8, shows a dark red filament that's about half a million miles long.

Unstable magnetic forces cause these filaments, which are cooler clouds of solar material, to be tethered above the sun's surface, according to NASA.

A small cloud of radiation associated with the "solar whip" did reach the Earth. A minor geomagnetic storm and a minor solar radiation storm brought the Northern Lights to parts of North America over the weekend.

Both storms have ended, according to the National Weather Service's Space Weather Prediction Center.

CNN meteorologist Rob Marciano says the Northern Lights may be visible tonight, too, because a strong solar flare is about to happen as Sunspot AR1564 continues to grow and could cause the formation of an M-class flare, a solar euruption of medium strength.

NOAA forecasters estimate a 40% chance of M-flares during the next 24 hours. Those flares will be visible because the active region is turning toward Earth.

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Filed under: In Space • the Sun
May 25th, 2012
12:33 PM ET

High school freshman wins prize for early pancreatic cancer detection test

Jack Andraka, a 15-year-old high school freshman, is the young man of the hour in the science world.

Last week, he won the $75,000 grand prize at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh for a non-invasive and cheap way to detect pancreatic cancer.

Andraka appeard on CNN's "Early Start" Friday morning. Click here to watch the interview and read more about his prize-winning idea.

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Filed under: Discoveries
May 24th, 2012
12:05 PM ET

Enhanced video shows beautiful detail on sun

You know how, as a kid, you were always warned not to look directly at the sun? Thanks to videos like this, you don’t have to.

The entire video, on the NASA website, covers 24 hours of solar activity back on September 25, 2011, in about 2 minutes, 45 seconds.

The colors appear blue and gold because additional processing was added to enhance the details.

There’s no scientific value to the processing, it just looks cool!

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Filed under: the Sun
April 17th, 2012
01:50 PM ET

Sun spits out giant fireball

It looked like some incredibly large entity was doing cannonballs on the sun yesterday.

NASA called it a prominence. We call it totally cool. The eruption happened alongside a “medium-sized” solar flare, peaking at 1:45 p.m. ET, NASA says. The image was captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.

Was it directed at the Earth? Click on the video to find out.

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Filed under: In Space • the Sun
April 4th, 2012
10:45 AM ET

Flying cars? A plane you can drive

Flying cars are not just the stuff of sci-fi movies anymore. Massachusetts-based Terrafugia Inc. announced this week that its street-legal prototype, the Transition, completed its first flight last month, bringing the company closer to its goal of selling the flying car within the next year.

An announcement on the company’s website said the Transition reached an altitude of 1,400 feet during an eight-minute flight around the Plattsburgh International Airport on March 23.

The company says the two-seater Light Sport Aircraft can drive on roads and highways, park in a single-car garage and take to the skies using unleaded gasoline.

Click on the video to hear Terrafugia’s co-founder, Anna Mracek Deitrich, explain more about how the Transition works.

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Filed under: News


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