Spaceflight Now: Breaking News
Sunday: October 1, 2000  0420 GMT
Accepted view of Universe challenged by astronomer
A new scientific report lends strong support for a controversial theory that rejects the idea that the Universe consists mostly of cold dark matter. The new theory puts forward the concept of "ordinary" matter filling the Universe.
Commercial Proton rocket launch set for today
A Russian Proton rocket is on the launch pad for a weekend blastoff carrying an American-made communications satellite that will serve Asia. The GE-1A spacecraft will be lofted into orbit today for Americom Asia-Pacific from Baikonur Cosmodrome.
Saturday: September 30, 2000  0801 GMT
NASA, Lockheed Martin agree on X-33 plan
NASA and Lockheed Martin have agreed on a plan to go forward with the X-33 space plane program, to include aluminum fuel tanks for the vehicle's hydrogen fuel, a revised payment schedule and a target launch date in 2003.
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Scientists converge as solar activity peaks -- As the Ulysses spacecraft hurtles through space towards the Sun's south pole, more than 100 scientists from 16 countries will be speeding their way through airspace next week towards ESTEC, ESA's technical centre near Amsterdam.
Friday: September 29, 2000  1200 GMT
Discovery cleared for 100th shuttle launch next week
NASA officials on Thursday affirmed October 5 as the launch date for the 100th space shuttle mission -- an action-packed space station construction flight featuring four spacewalks. Shuttle Discovery will carry a crew of seven astronauts on the 11-day mission.

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Commercial Proton rocket launch set for Sunday
A Russian Proton rocket is on the launch pad for a weekend blastoff carrying an American-made communications satellite that will serve Asia. The GE-1A spacecraft will be lofted into orbit on Sunday for Americom Asia-Pacific from Baikonur Cosmodrome.
NASA's next Martian probe named '2001 Mars Odyssey'
As NASA's next spacecraft to the red planet begins a crucial round of testing in preparations for launch next year, the mission has been given a new name: 2001 Mars Odyssey.
Mars orbiter
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Soyuz rocket launches spy satellite -- A Russian Soyuz rocket launched a classified military reconnaissance satellite into orbit today from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The payload was only identified as Kosmos-2373.

Crews picked for 4 station, science and Hubble missions -- A cadre of 20 astronauts and one Russian cosmonaut has been assigned to four Space Shuttle missions targeted for launches in 2001. Two of the missions will continue space station construction, the third will be dedicated to scientific research, while the fourth will conduct the fourth servicing of the Hubble Space Telescope.
Thursday: September 28, 2000  0357 GMT
Chandra resolves two stars in Sirius system
NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has studied the Sirius star system located 8.6 light years from Earth. Its image shows the bright Sirius B, a white dwarf star, and the dimmer Sirius A that is more than twice as massive as the sun.
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More space station battery equipment to be launched -- On its own again following Atlantis' visit, the International Space Station is orbiting the Earth in excellent health and is one step closer to becoming a permanent home to astronauts and cosmonauts.
Wednesday: September 27, 2000  1019 GMT
Fountains of fire on the Sun illuminate solar mystery
Giant fountains of fast-moving, multimillion-degree gas in the outermost atmosphere of the Sun have revealed an important clue to a long-standing mystery -- the location of the heating mechanism that makes the corona 1,000 times hotter than the Sun's visible surface.
Telescope's first wide-field image sees spiral galaxy
The University of Arizona/Smithsonian 6.5-meter MMTO telescope on Mount Hopkins, Ariz., took its first wide-field picture this month. It looked at spiral galaxy NGC 7479 in the constellation Pegasus, revealing extensive spiral arms with newly formed stars and glowing clouds of gas.
Tuesday: September 26, 2000  1100 GMT
New telescope opens with look at star cluster
"First Light!" suddenly rang through the air in the darkened and eerily tense control room. The phenomenon known as "first light" had just been achieved for one of the twin Magellan 6.5-meter telescopes of the Carnegie Observatories with a view of a star cluster 20,000 light years away.
Star cluster
Sun probe sees largest sunspot group in a decade
Active region on the Sun is the host of the largest sunspot group observed so far during the current solar cycle, according results from the SOHO spacecraft. On September 20, the sunspot area within the group spanned 2,140 millionths of the visible solar surface, an area a dozen times larger than the entire surface of the Earth!
New rocket engine promises lower launch costs
TRW Inc. has taken a huge stride toward providing more affordable access to space with the successful initial static-fire testing of a low-cost booster engine. It is one of the largest liquid rocket engines built since Saturn F-1 engines that powered Apollo.
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Five satellites riding Russian rocket into orbit today -- Once a Soviet missile built for destruction, a converted Dnepr rocket was launched for peaceful means today, hauling five microsatellites into Earth orbit.
Zenit rocket launches spy satellite -- A Russian Zenit 2 rocket launched a hush-hush military reconnaissance satellite into orbit Monday from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The payload was only identified as Kosmos-2372.

Galileo replaying data from Jupiter's moon Ganymede -- Galileo spends another week playing back science data stored on its onboard tape recorder. Observations include images of different features and terrains on Ganymede's surface and a recording of the plasma, dust, and electric and magnetic fields surrounding the moon.
Monday: September 25, 2000  0145 GMT
Top 10 images from commercial eye-in-the-sky
The world's only commercial one-meter resolution Earth-imaging satellite is celebrating its first anniversary in space. To mark this event, the Top 10 pictures from the Ikonos satellite are being released, including views of the Great Pyramids, London's Millennium Wheel and the bombing of Chechnya.
Seven meteorites added to new online map
Arizona is experiencing a mini-boom in meteorite recoveries, and you now can view a web-based map that shows where the meteorites hit, what they look like and how they're classified.
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Converted Soviet missile to launch five small satellites -- A Russian Dnepr-1 rocket is awaiting a Tuesday morning launch inside of a missile silo at Launch Complex 109 at Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan. Shrouded within its nose cone is a cargo of five microsatellites for a variety of countries and organizations.
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Hubble poster
The Hubble Space Telescope's majestic view of the Eskimo Nebula. This spectacular poster is available now from the Astronomy Now Store.

Earlier news
Sept. 18-24: Hubble movies; Atlantis lands safely; Global weather satellite launched; Mystery of asteroid Eros; X-ray telescope to provide virtual journey to black hole.

Sept. 11-17: Astronauts delivery supplies to space station; Chandra clinches case for new type of black hole; Hubble finds possible crater of fresh ice on space rock; Star-making factory; Inside cauldron of exploded star; Ariane 5 launch.

Sept. 4-10: Atlantis launches and docks to space station; Major Martian volcanoes surveyed by laser; Hubble reveals mysterious layers of planetary nebula and dusty galaxy; Proton and Ariane 4 launches.

More news  See our weekly archive of space news.

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