Two Russian Companies Plan to Build First Commercial Space Station – Will there soon be another human destination in low Earth orbit, or is this a redundant pipe dream? Two Russian-based companies hope to build the first-ever commercial space station, named, fittingly, Commercial Space Station (CSS). –Nancy Atkinson / Universe Today
House to vote on Senate NASA bill – The US House of Representatives is slated to vote on a NASA appropriations bill WEDNESDAY. The bill is essentially the same the Senate passed recently. The House had a compromise bill up for debate, but decided yesterday there wasn’t time before Congress goes on vacation. So they are going to vote on the Senate version instead. –Phil Plait / Bad Astronomy
Kepler Mission Manager Update – Science team members are preparing to announce the mission’s latest discovery in early November. Additionally, the science team is expected to validate the Kepler 9d planet in the near future. Kepler 9d, which is about one and a half times larger than Earth, was announced as a planetary candidate at a media telecon held Aug. 26, 2010. –Kepler / NASA
Scientists Catch First Glimpse of ‘Pseudo’ Hawking Radiation – There’s a bit of buzz this week in science news about the first observation of “Hawking radiation” in the laboratory by scientists at the University of Milan. It’s interesting, to be sure, and definitely worthy of note, but let’s be clear about one thing: we’re talking about an analogue of a black hole emitting Hawking radiation, not the real deal… –Discovery News
A star’s spectacular death in the constellation Taurus was observed on Earth as the supernova of 1054 A.D. Now, almost a thousand years later, a super dense object — called a neutron star — left behind by the explosion is seen spewing out a blizzard of high-energy particles into the expanding debris field known as the Crab Nebula. X-ray data from Chandra provide significant clues to the workings of this mighty cosmic “generator,” which is producing energy at the rate of 100,000 suns.