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Chandra Spots X-Rays from an Elusive Object.

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Soyuz crew waves to reporters
Soyuz Blasts Off With First European Woman to Visit ISS

A Russian Soyuz lifted off Sunday morning from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, bound for the International Space Station. The spacecraft is carrying cosmonauts Victor Afanassiev and Konstantin Kozeev, as well as Claudie Haigneré, the first European woman Astronaut selected for an ISS mission. They are expected to reach the station on Tuesday morning, and will stay for eight days performing scientific experiments.

PSLV Launch
Indian Rocket Launches Three Satellites

An Indian polar satellite launch vehicle (PSLV) lifted off from Sriharikota on Monday morning carrying three satellites. The launch date was kept secret because of security concerns in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States. The rocket's main payload was an experimental satellite for the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), and it also carried two smaller satellites: PROBA from Belgium and BIRD from Germany.

Odyssey Image
Odyssey Arrives at Mars Tomorrow

NASA engineers are getting ready to perform the trickiest part of the Mars Odyssey mission - slowing the spacecraft down in Mars' atmosphere so it can go into a useful circular orbit. Odyssey will fire its main engine for 19 minutes Tuesday at 0326 GMT (10:26pm EDT) and then be out of contact for 10 minutes as it passes around the far side of the planet. If all goes well, the spacecraft will be slowed enough to be trapped in Mars' gravity in a highly elliptical orbit. Over the next few months it will correct its orbit with subsequent passes until it's flying in a circular orbit. It was during this aerobraking stage of the mission that NASA's previous orbiter sent to Mars was destroyed.

Herbig Haro image
Chandra Spots X-Rays from an Elusive Object

The space-based Chandra X-Ray Observatory was put to work recently to help uncover how Herbig Haro objects are formed - these are dust clouds formed when high-velocity gas emitted from young stars collides with clouds of interstellar material. Before Chandra, no observatory was sensitive enough to detect X-rays coming from this class of objects, and so, Astronomers couldn't understand how they were formed.

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