Sunday: July 29, 2001  0353 GMT
Signature of life on Mars found in decades-old data
Experiments done more than two decades ago on Martian soil collected by the Viking Landers 1 and 2 provided evidence that life might exist on the Red Planet, says a professor from the University of Southern California.
NASA rejoins Japan in X-ray space observatory project
The United States and Japan will team up to rebuild and launch a powerful observatory for measuring high energy phenomena in the Universe. The Astro-E2 observatory will replace the original Astro-E satellite, which was lost during launch in February 2000.
Saturday: July 28, 2001  0438 GMT
Launch of Genesis probe planned for Monday
A NASA space probe that will collect samples of the solar wind for return to Earth begins its journey on Monday with launch atop a Boeing Delta 2 rocket from Cape Canaveral.
Pad 17A
Station experiments return to Earth labs for study
Payload ground support teams were at Kennedy Space Center to greet Space Shuttle Atlantis when it landed late Tuesday and retrieve their experiments that have been onboard the International Space Station for more than three months.
Friday: July 27, 2001  1620 GMT
Extended delay for Titan 4
The launch of a U.S. Air Force Titan 4 rocket is now on indefinite hold following yesterday's discovery of a problem with the second stage guidance and navigation system. America's most powerful unmanned rocket had been scheduled to launch this morning from Cape Canaveral carrying a missile-warning satellite.
MULTIMEDIA: (subscribers only)
Titan 4
Hubble's panoramic portrait of vast star-forming region
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has snapped a panoramic portrait of a vast, sculpted landscape of gas and dust where thousands of stars are being born. This fertile star-forming region, called the 30 Doradus Nebula, has a sparkling stellar centerpiece: the most spectacular cluster of massive stars in our cosmic neighborhood of about 25 galaxies.
Companies studying vehicle to launch from Mars
NASA's Mars Technology Program at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., has awarded three industry contracts for the development of concepts for a small rocket that will lift science samples gathered by NASA's Mars Sample Return mission from the Martian surface and support their return to Earth.
DAILY BRIEFING  Other stories making news today
Lockheed Martin realigns business structure -- Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems (LMCSS) on Thursday announced plans to realign its business structure to reduce overall costs and improve its competitive position in the commercial satellite manufacturing marketplace.
Thursday: July 26, 2001  0502 GMT
Titan 4 to launch before dawn Friday from Cape
America's most powerful unmanned rocket is ready to launch the next space sentry that will stand guard in orbit to spot enemy missile launches and nuclear explosions. Liftoff of the Titan 4B rocket with the Defense Support Program-21 satellite is slated for 4:08 a.m. EDT on Friday.
Titan 4
Craft snaps extraordinary images of Mt. Etna eruption
NASA's Terra satellite captured the July 22 explosion of the Mt. Etna volcano in remarkable images. Etna is located near the eastern coast of Sicily, to the southwest of mainland Italy. Major eruptions have been issuing from both summit and flank vents.
Mt. Etna
Star with midriff bulge eyed by astronomers
For the first time ever, a star spinning so fast its mid-section is stretched out has been directly measured by an ultra-high-resolution NASA telescope system on Palomar Mountain near San Diego.
DAILY BRIEFING  Other stories making news today
Craft flies through Earth's magnetic tail, sees rare event -- Thanks to a fluke encounter while flying through the Earth's magnetic tail two years ago, NASA's Wind spacecraft may have solved a long-standing mystery about how the sun's magnetic field interacts with that of the Earth.
Wednesday: July 25, 2001  0557 GMT
Atlantis returns home after delivering station airlock
Blocked by bad weather overnight Monday, the shuttle Atlantis glided back to Earth late Tuesday, dropping out of a muggy Florida sky into the glare of xenon spotlights to complete a virtually flawless space station assembly mission.
   MISSION STATUS CENTER - live updates
   VIDEO: LANDING - subscribers only
   VIDEO: LANDING IN INFRARED - subscribers only
   VIDEO: CREW WAKEUP - subscribers only
   MISSION VIDEO THEATER - subscribe now
Surfing in Sagittarius isn't for the faint-hearted
Hubble observations have revealed huge waves sculpted in the Red Spider Nebula. This warm and windy planetary nebula harbours one of the hottest stars in the Universe and its powerful stellar winds generate waves 100 billion kilometres high - intimidating for even the bravest space surfers.
Red Spider
Strong stellar gusts spotted in nearby massive star
A dramatic infrared image released by the Gemini Observatory sheds new light on the early stages of the formation of giant stars in our galaxy. The image reveals remarkable details in a nebula of gas and dust expelled from a young star named AFGL 2591.
AFGL 2591
Former X-33 aerospike engine completes 2nd firing
Stennis Space Center has successfully completed the second test in a three-part series for a Space Launch Initiative program of the using the Linear Aerospike XRS-2200 flight engine.
Tuesday: July 24, 2001  0500 GMT
Bad weather keeps shuttle Atlantis in space
Fickle Florida weather forced NASA to scrap plans to bring space shuttle Atlantis back to Earth today. The shuttle will remain in orbit for another day in hopes of better conditions at the Kennedy Space Center to cap this successful mission that delivered the Quest airlock to the international space station.
   MISSION STATUS CENTER - live updates
   MISSION VIDEO THEATER - subscribe now
U.S. Senate finds money for Pluto space probe
Planetary scientists and space activists seeking support for a mission to Pluto won a major victory late last week when a U.S. Senate committee approved a NASA budget that includes some funding for such a mission.
DAILY BRIEFING  Other stories making news today
Galileo heads for Io -- With two weeks to go before the next flyby, activities on the spacecraft are relatively quiet, while activities on the ground are heating up. The flight team of scientists and engineers are busy putting the final touches on the series of commands that will govern Galileo as it skims past Io on August 5.
Monday: July 23, 2001  0914 GMT
Atlas rocket launches U.S. weather satellite
A Lockheed Martin Atlas 2A rocket successfully launched from Cape Canaveral this morning and placed the GOES-M weather satellite into the proper orbit.
   MISSION STATUS CENTER - from the Cape
Black hole discovery
Astronomers have made a provocative discovery -- the first galaxy without a supermassive black hole (SBH) at its center or the smallest black hole ever detected in the center of a galaxy.

Earlier news
July 16-22: Spacewalkers christen station's Quest airlock; Does the Red Planet have liquid water today?; Solar sail experiment lost due to launcher problem; Star clusters born in cosmic collision wreckage.

July 9-15: Ariane 5 rocket fails; Atlantis launches doorway for space station Alpha; Security breach forces tighter shuttle protection; Scientists: Water-bearing worlds beyond solar system.

July 2-8: Hubble captures best view of Mars obtained from Earth; Astronomers discover giant Kuiper Belt object; NASA, Boeing dispute major TDRS problem.

June 25-July 1: MAP launched to measure afterglow of the Big Bang; Hints of planet-sized drifters bewilder scientists; Satellite images tell tale of Wisconsin tornado.

June 18-24: Atlas launches foundation of ICO satellite system; Temperature map of Io presents a puzzle; Pegasus launch of HESSI postponed indefinitely; Atlantis rolled to launch pad; Grounded military weather satellite finally repaired.

More news  See our weekly archive of space news.

Contact us
If you have a comment or question for Spaceflight Now, just send us an e-mail.

Hubble poster
The Hubble Space Telescope's majestic view of the Eskimo Nebula. This spectacular poster is available now from the Astronomy Now Store.