Black holes have existed since the dawn of time

In an X-ray image looking further into the past than ever before, NASA astronomers have discovered that massive black holes were common in the early universe and grew much more aggressively than previously thought.

Next solar cycle may be weakest for centuries

Sunspots could be set to disappear altogether after the next solar maximum, new studies indicate.

NASA to launch robotic gas station into orbit

Refueling your spaceship at the local robot gas station may not just be a piece of science fiction movies anymore.

iPhones on board for shuttle's final mission

When the Atlantis space shuttle makes its final flight later this year, it will carry two iPhone 4s - not so that the four astronauts can chat with friends and family at home, but as the basis for several experiments.

Meteorite sheds light on start of life on Earth

New tests on what's considered the best-preserved meteorite in the world have shed light on the way asteroids may have served up a varying menu of the building blocks of life.

Solar eruption promises dramatic aurorae

Sky-watchers in high latitudes could be in for a good light show tonight, following a spectacular coronal mass ejection (CME) from the sun yesterday.

Solar system shaped by Jupiter's travels

A new model of the early solar system shows Jupiter rocketing about the place, moving toward the center of the solar system and back out again.

Tiny worms help open up deep space travel

Millions of microscopic worms are helping scientists overcome the threats posed by space travel to astronauts' health, and could also help prevent muscle degradation in the elderly.

Moon has much more water than thought

The moon appears to be far richer in water than previously believed, following the discovery of 'melt inclusions' in rocks brought back from the Apollo mission in 1972.

NASA to collect samples from near-Earth asteroid

NASA's announced that it's to launch an unmanned ship to an asteroid in 2016, gathering samples that could help to explain how life began.

Skylon spaceplane gets ESA approval

After nearly thirty years on the drawing board, a revolutionary British spaceplane has received approval for the next stage of development.

NASA reveals design for deep space vehicle

NASA's announced its plans for the US spacecraft it hopes will take human beings into deep space.

Black holes spinning faster and faster

Many giant black holes in the centre of galaxies are spinning faster than at any time in the history of the universe, and may have been set in motion comparatively recently, new research shows.

Dark energy fuels universe's expansion

After a five-year survey of 200,000 galaxies, astronomers believe they've confirmed that dark energy is driving our universe apart at an ever-accelerating rate.

Earth's core is melting - and freezing

The inner core of the Earth appears to be simultaneously melting and freezing, because of heat circulation in the rocky mantle that covers it.

Billions of 'orphan planets' wander alone in space

Hundreds of billions of isolated planets are believed to be floating alone in space, following an international survey of the sky.

New candidate for habitable exoplanet

Scientists from the Institut Pierre Simon Laplace in Paris say they've confirmed that the Gliese 581d exoplanet could support Earth-like life.

Endeavour ready for final launch

Space shuttle Endeavour is ready to go, says NASA, in what will be its last launch and the second-to-last for any shuttle.

Magma ocean lies beneath Io's surface

There's a vast ocean of molten magma beneath the surface of Jupiter's moon Io, NASA scientists have found.

Crab Nebula emits unexplained superflare

Astronomers have observed a massive 'superflare' from the Crab Nebula - but are scratching their heads to try to explain it.