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New View of Uranus.

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Tightest Binary System Discovered

Image credit: ESO
Astronomers have discovered a pair of White Dwarf stars that revolve around each other at a distance of only 80,000km (1/5th the distance between the Earth and the Moon) - the closest binary system ever discovered. The system, known as RX J0806.3+1527, was investigated with the European Southern Observatory's Very Large telescope (VLT), and observers noticed that the object dimmed once every five minutes suggesting a binary system.

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Mar 15, 2002, 3:48pm

New View of Uranus

Image credit: Subaru
The Subaru telescope located in Hawaii has taken a stunning new image of Uranus, revealing the planet's rings and two of its moons. The photograph is actually a composite, made up of Infrared light from three different regions of the spectrum; methane, the dominant component of Uranus shows up as blue.

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Mar 15, 2002, 3:34pm

Russian Spaceplane Unveiled

Image credit: Space Adventures
Space tourism company Space Adventures revealed the vehicle they hope will open up the market for sub-orbital flights for the average person: the Russian-built Cosmopolis XXI. Designed by the same company that built the Russian Buran space shuttle, the Cosmopolis will be capable of carrying a pilot and two paying passengers (ticket prices will be $98,000 US) on a parabolic flight up to an altitude of 100km - literally the edge of space. Test flights for the C-21 are expected in 2004.

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Mar 14, 2002, 4:17pm

Chandra Locates Twin Quasars

Image credit: Chandra
A new image taken by the Chandra X-Ray Observatory reveals what appear to be twin quasars. Because they are different colours and sizes, Astronomers have ruled out an optical illusion. So what caused them? The current theory is that they were created when two distant Galaxies merged; supermassive black holes at the heart of the Galaxies were enhanced by the new material they could absorb, and flared up in the x-ray spectrum.

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Mar 13, 2002, 4:06pm

Shuttle Lands Safely

Image credit: NASA
The Space Shuttle Columbia and its crew of seven astronauts landed safely Tuesday morning after completing their mission to upgrade the Hubble Space Telescope. The shuttle landed precisely on schedule, at 0932 GMT (4:32am EST) at the Kennedy Space Center, and the crew performed the customary post-flight inspection of the shuttle. The next shuttle mission is schedule for three weeks from now, when Atlantis will dock with the International Space Station. (source: AP)

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Mar 12, 2002, 8:08am

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