Space News for March 31, 1999

Comets an Unlikely Source for Earth’s Water

New data gathered by Caltech offers evidence against the long-standing theory that the Earth’s water was delivered by comets over eons. Were this the case, our oceans would contain more deuterium (or heavy water), which is prevalent in comet Hale-Bopp – and likely all comets.

Astronomy Now
CNN Space

ESA Focuses Attention on Mars

The European Space Agency has signed a contract with Matra Marconi Space to send an unmanned probe to Mars. Equipped with sensors to detect hidden water underneath the surface of the planet, it’s expected the spacecraft will launch in 2003.

BBC News

Hydrogen Peroxide on Europa’s Surface

Galileo has returned images of Hydrogen peroxide on the surface of Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons. It’s believed that particles from Jupiter collide with the moon and constantly form Hydrogen peroxide – this is caused by a process called radiolysis.

Astronomy Now

Reporter Gets a Ride on the Vomit Comet

CNN Reporter, Miles O’Brien, gets the opportunity to see what it’s like to be an astronaut-in-training aboard NASA’s Vomit Comet. The aircraft flies in parabolic arcs, allowing passengers to experience 30 seconds of weightlessness.

CNN Space