A rocket body, seen from cameras carried higher up on the rocket, with the curve of Earth below.

SpaceX Starship prototype soars 6 miles up, then lands upright

SpaceX’s test flight of Starship SN15 went off without a hitch today, May 5, 2021. Following 4 Starship prototypes that exploded upon landing after their high-altitude flight tests, the SN15 landed safely.

Oval filled with swirly blue colors, with a horizontal stripe and a bulge of stars, and two small irregular galaxies, all labeled.

Map of Milky Way halo reveals dark matter ocean

The gravity of the Large Magellanic Cloud – one of the Milky Way’s satellite dwarf galaxies – is collecting stars behind it in a trail, like the wake from a boat, as it travels through our galaxy’s halo.

What moves the sailing stones of Death Valley?

At Death Valley’s Racetrack Playa, some rocks show signs of movement, etching trails in the dry lake bed. It was an enduring mystery until quite recently.

Warmer ocean temperatures may decrease Saharan dust crossing the Atlantic

Every year millions of tons of dust from the Sahara Desert are swirled up into the atmosphere and carried across the Atlantic. Research suggests that, as the climate changes, Saharan dust transport will decrease.

Night view illustration of the LOFAR telescope, with a bright starlike object in the sky and rainbow coloured emission emanating from it towards the telescope. Inset with spiral galaxy.

Radio waves from famous FRB surprisingly long and late

Astronomers have managed to detect very long wavelength radio emission from a well-studied, repeating fast radio burst, called FRB 20180916B. What’s more, the longer wavelengths arrive 3 days after the shorter wavelength counterpart of the signal! Why?

You can help map the emerging cicadas

Go on a safari this spring to help scientists map the 17-year periodical cicadas known as Brood X that are emerging in the weeks ahead.

Saving a humpback whale

Take 3 minutes to watch a feel-good video of a team of responders saving a humpback whale in distress.

Dense, complex network of threads in many colors.

Listen to a spiderweb

Spiders are master builders, expertly weaving strands of silk into intricate 3D webs. Now, scientists report they have translated the complex structure of a web into music. Listen here.

Rocky surface with one rock circled in red, and red X in middle of slightly dark round area.

Before-and-after of asteroid Bennu’s sample site

During its final flyby this month, the spacecraft OSIRIS-REx took an image of the location where it collected a sample from asteroid Bennu’s surface. It’ll return to Earth 2 years from now, providing scientists with clues to the creation of our solar system.

Asian man in black tee shirt, inside a space vehicle.

Astronaut Soichi Noguchi sets a new space record

Congratulations to Japan’s astronaut Soichi Noguchi, who this month was awarded the Guinness World Record for the longest time between spacewalks: 15 years and 214 days.

2 galaxies nearly merged, dotted with pink along arms, and centered with 2 brilliant white lights.

Hubble spots double quasars in merging galaxies

New images of the oldest known pairs of quasars, farthest and oldest yet seen, show that their home galaxies are colliding.

Colorful planet with bands in atmosphere and thin rings.

Scientists detect X-rays from Uranus

For the first time, scientists have detected X-rays being emitted by the planet Uranus. The discovery was made by a new analysis of data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory.

Ball of light with tail surrounded by colorful streaks.

Interstellar visitor Borisov could be 1st truly pristine comet yet seen

Comet 2I/Borisov is the 2nd known object to pass near our sun from outside our solar system. Its 2019 pass near our sun might have been its first-ever interaction with a star. If so, it’s among the most pristine, or unspoiled, objects yet known.

Striking new image of M106

This spectacular image features spiral galaxy Messier 106 and its diminutive neighbors, as well as a dense field of background galaxies and foreground stars.

Animation of the orbits of Earth and Apophis showing how often they cross each other.

Earth is safe from asteroid Apophis for the next 100 years

Apophis’ flyby in early March 2021 enabled astronomers to conclude there’s no chance this asteroid will strike Earth anytime soon. “A 2068 impact is not in the realm of possibility anymore,” one scientist said, “and our calculations don’t show any impact risk for at least the next 100 years.”

Is ‘Oumuamua a frozen piece of an exoPluto?

A new theory about ‘Oumuamua suggests the weird object that passed through our solar system in 2017 was a remnant of a Pluto-like world from another solar system. As one scientist said, “‘Oumuamua may be the first piece of an exoplanet brought to us.”

57th anniversary of North America’s biggest earthquake

On Good Friday, March 27, 1964, south-central Alaska heaved under one of the most powerful earthquakes ever recorded, registering a 9.2 on the Richter scale.

yellow-orange donut-shape on black background.

New image of M87’s supermassive black hole

The Event Horizon Telescope collaboration released a new image of the supermassive black hole in the center of massive galaxy M87 on March 24, 2021. The image shows the signatures of a magnetic field.

A field of orange and blue flowers.

How to make beneficial insects welcome in your garden

Ladybugs, lacewings, spiders, and bees can help your garden grow. How to help these beneficial insects.

Does a green sky predict a tornado?

Sometimes, before a tornado strikes, the sky turns an eerie green color. The answer to why the sky is blue will help you understand why the sky is sometimes green before bad weather.