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Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter on Red Planet.
In this photograph of Saturn, it's possible to see the faint filaments that circle around major storms on the planet. scientists still don't know what these filaments are; they might be material connecting two storms together after they've split up. The could also represent wind flow in Saturn's atmosphere. Cassini took this image on July 6, 2005 when it was 2.4 million km (1.5 million miles) away from the planet.
Cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev is about to break the record for human spaceflight on Tuesday. Currently on board the International Space Station, he will tie the current record holder, Sergei Avdeyev, when reaches 748 days in orbit. Krikalev has been on two long-duration stays on the Mir space station, two flights on the Space Shuttle, and two trips on the Space Station. He was aboard Mir when the Soviet Union collapsed, the first Russian to fly on the Shuttle, and a member of the first crew for the International Space Station.
With Friday's launch, NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is now on its way to the Red Planet. One of the instruments on board is CRISM, or the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars. This instrument will search for evidence of past water on the surface of the planet, by locating the residues left by minerals that formed in water. It'll have 20 times the resolution of any previous instrument sent to Mars to do this task. With data gathered by CRISM, researchers should have a wealth of potential targets for future rovers and landers.
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