Public meteorite hunt after large fireball streaks over New Zealand

Public meteorite hunt after large fireball streaks over New Zealand

A very bright fireball was seen over Otago and Canterbury, New Zealand at 08:04 UTC (21:04 LT) on March 13, 2024. Analysis shows that some 0.5 km (1.1 pounds) of the object survived the entry and ended up scattered on the ground in MacKenzie Country. A public search for meteorites is scheduled for March 21.

Giant volcano discovered in Mars’ Tharsis volcanic province

Giant volcano discovered in Mars’ Tharsis volcanic province

Scientists at the 55th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in The Woodlands, Texas, announced the discovery of a vast volcano and a potential glacier ice sheet in Mars’ Tharsis volcanic province, near the equator. The finding, based on images from spacecraft orbiting Mars since 1971, highlights a volcano provisionally named “Noctis” and suggests the presence of glacier ice beneath a volcanic deposit. This discovery opens new avenues for studying Mars’ geological evolution and future exploration.

Asteroid 2024 EJ4 flew past Earth at just 0.07 LD

Asteroid 2024 EJ4 flew past Earth at just 0.07 LD

A newly-discovered asteroid designated 2024 EJ4 flew past Earth at a distance of just 0.07 LD / 0.00018 AU (26 246 km / 16 308 miles) from the center of our planet at 17:22 UTC on March 13, 2024.

Asteroid 2024 EL3 flew past Earth at just 0.09 LD

Asteroid 2024 EL3 flew past Earth at just 0.09 LD

A newly-discovered asteroid designated 2023 EL3 flew past Earth at a distance of just 0.09 LD / 0.00024 AU (36 040 km / 22 394 miles) from the center of our planet at 10:31 UTC on March 11, 2024.

Largest object ever jettisoned from ISS to make uncontrolled re-entry this week

Largest object ever jettisoned from ISS to make uncontrolled re-entry this week

The International Space Station’s (ISS) largest-ever discarded object, a hefty equipment pallet weighing 2.9 tons, is anticipated to make an uncontrolled descent back to Earth between March 8 and 9, 2024. Launched into space for a critical ISS power system upgrade, this pallet, loaded with nine old station batteries, will not fully disintegrate upon reentry, with predictions indicating about half a ton of debris could survive the descent and impact the planet’s surface.

Astronomers discover oceans of water vapor in planet-forming disc around young star

Astronomers discover oceans of water vapor in planet-forming disc around young star

Astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) have discovered vast reservoirs of water vapor in the disc around HL Tauri, a young star 450 light-years away from Earth, unveiling processes that may lead to the birth of planets rich in water and redefining our search for life in the universe.

Study confirms no risk of asteroid Apophis being redirected toward Earth by other asteroids

Study confirms no risk of asteroid Apophis being redirected toward Earth by other asteroids

A comprehensive study by astronomers from Western University calculated the paths of all known asteroids and found there is no risk of the notorious asteroid Apophis colliding with another space object and altering its course toward Earth, further dispelling fears of a potentially catastrophic impact in April 2029. Apophis is named for the demon serpent, who personified evil and chaos in ancient Egyptian mythology.

Comet disintegrates as it dives into the Sun

Comet disintegrates as it dives into the Sun

A new sun-diving comet appeared in LASCO C3 coronagraph imagery at around 11:54 UTC on March 2, 2024, and continued moving toward the Sun until it disintegrated by 05:42 UTC on March 3.