Water flows on Mars: NASA

New findings from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) provide the strongest evidence yet that liquid water flows intermittently on Mars. John Grunsfeld, astronaut and associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington said that the quest for water on Mars has been to “follow the water,” in search for life in the universe. “Now […]

Optical space research laboratory to study atmospheric gravity waves

  Dr. Sandile Malinga, CEO of the South African National Space Agency (SANSA)  has announced that a state-of-the-art optical space research laboratory (OSR), will be constructed at the South African Astronomical Observatory in Sutherland (the world’s darkest astronomical site) later this year. He was speaking at the 17th European Incoherent Scatter Scientific Association (EISCAT) symposium […]

Scientists develop new tools for predicting arrival and impact of solar storms

  When the sun hurls a billion tons of high-energy particles and magnetic fields into space at speeds of more than a million miles per hour and the “space weather” conditions are right, the resulting geomagnetic storm at Earth can wreak havoc on communication and navigation systems, electrical power grids, and pose radiation hazards to […]

Are we heading for a Maunder Minimum?

  Will history repeat itself? Is the sun gearing for a Maunder Minimum? Prof. Valentina Zharkova, a mathematics professor at Northumbria University believes we are.  She delivered the results of a study which proved that the sun may have two hearts in a presentation at the Royal Astronomical Society’s National Astronomy meeting, held from 5 […]

SANSA and UK Space Agency sign MoU

  A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was recently signed by Sir Mark Walport, the UK government’s chief scientific adviser, on behalf of the UK Space Agency and Dr. Sandile Malinga, CEO of the South African Space Agency.  Sir Mark was on an official visit to South Africa to deepen collaboration around science and innovation – […]

New Horizons calls home after Pluto flypast

The long-awaited call has come. NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft phoned home just before 21h00 EDT on 14 July 2015 to let the mission team and the world know it had accomplished the historic first ever flyby of Pluto. This is a historic win for science and for exploration. The pre-programmed “phone call” – a 15-minute […]

CPUT planning a successor to Africa’s first nanosatellite

  The Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) is planning a successor to its first CubeSat and has set its vision on ship-tracking. In a paper presented at the recent SAAMSAT space Symposium in Pretoria, Daniel de Villiers, development engineer at French South African Institute of Technology (F’SATI) at CUPT, said that  ZACube-2 will be […]

CubeSat to fly in deep space

Two CubeSats will be flying past Mars in 2016 just as NASA’s next Mars lander, InSight, is descending through the Martian atmosphere and landing on the surface. Mars Cube One (MarCO), will provide an experimental communications relay to speedily inform Earth about the landing CubeSats are a class of spacecraft based on a standardised small […]