Space News for March 26, 1999

Huge Gamma Ray Burst Detected

Astronomers recently observed the largest explosion ever witnessed. Thought to be caused by the birth of a black hole, or the collision of two neutron stars, energy from the explosion traveled nine billion light years, and was visible by the naked eye.

ABC News
BBC News
NASA Gamma Ray Bursts Information

CNN Space
FOX News
Space Central

Chilean Telescope Facility is Now Operational

Taking advantage of the clear skies over Northern Chile, the first optical telescope at the Paranal Observatory facility has captured amazing images of space. Over the next few years, the facility will have a total of four high-powered telescopes linked electronically.

European Southern Observatory
BBC News

NASA Tests How to Extract Oxygen from Mars Atmosphere

In preparation for a manned flight to Mars, NASA scientists are testing a device to extract oxygen from the hostile Martian atmosphere. Once the technology has been perfected, astronauts will be able to prepare the air they need, without bringing it from the Earth.

NASA Press Release


Air Force Tests Ammonia-Fueled Engine

The Air Force recently tested the ESEX, a new high-powered electric propulsion system over the Pacific Ocean. Designed to maneuver satellites in orbit, the arcjet produced a third of a pound of thrust for just over two minutes.