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Space News
The European Commission is partnering with the European Investment Bank Group, announcing EUR 200 million of investments into the EU space sector, supporting ground-breaking innovation in the industry. During the European Space Policy Conference in Brussels, EIB Vice-President Ambroise Fayolle is signing an agreement with Andre-Hubert Roussel, CEO of ArianeGroup, confirming a EUR 100 million loan for the new Ariane 6 launcher programme.

Editor’s Note: In recent weeks, Russia and Japan announced investments in new space programs. Here, Space News looks at yet another key investment, this time from the EU.

Associated Press
Spacewalking astronauts have plugged a leak in a cosmic ray detector outside the International Space Station, bringing it another step closer to new life.

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UPI
NASA astronaut Andrew Morgan and European Space Agency astronaut Luca Parmitano completed repairs on the International Space Station’s Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer on Saturday during the third spacewalk of the year.

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Xinhua
The lander and rover of the Chang’e-4 probe have resumed work for the 14th lunar day on the far side of the moon after “sleeping” during the extremely cold night. Both the lander and the rover are in normal working order, according to the Lunar Exploration and Space Program Center of the China National Space Administration.

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American Institute of Physics
Since 1880, the Earth’s temperature has risen by 1.9 degrees Fahrenheit and is predicted to continue rising, according to the NASA Global Climate Change website. Scientists are actively seeking to understand this change and its effect on Earth’s ecosystems and residents.

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Global Times
China recently completed an in-flight verification for satellite drag-free control technology, marking a step forward in the country’s space-based gravitational wave detection program.

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German Aerospace Center
The experimentation phase on board the Eu:CROPIS satellite developed by the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum fur Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) came to an end on 31 December 2019. The compact satellite has been in an orbit around Earth that passes over the north and south poles for over one year.

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Space
NileSat, an Egyptian satellite operator, has picked SpaceX to launch a new communications satellite in 2022. SpaceX and Nilesat signed a contract in Cairo, Egypt Tuesday (Jan. 21) for the launch of the hefty NileSat-301 geostationary communications satellite on a Falcon 9 rocket, SpaceX officials said in an announcement.

Editor’s Note: SpaceX has become one of the leading companies in the modern space race. Here, Chelsea Gohd analyses a new mission in partnership with Nilesat.

Asian Age
Bengaluru: Astronauts from across the world held out a message for ISRO, urging the latter to introduce new criteria for the selection of crew and diversify the selection process so as to help doctors, scientists, engineers and the like to make the cut.

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CNN
Like any intrepid explorer, NASA’s Curiosity rover has to do safety checks before moving around on the Martian surface. Those who maintain communication with the rover on Earth keep an eye on those safety checks, like a parent getting messages from their traveling child.

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University of Bristol
A team of physicists and chemists from the University of Bristol hope to recycle radioactive material directly from a former nuclear power plant in Gloucestershire to generate ultra-long-lasting power sources.

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RIA Novosti
India’s space agency the ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) is gearing up for its week-long space mission worth $1.31 billion. Four astronauts have been shortlisted from the Indian Air Force after a series of tests conducted in India and Russia.

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AAP
Australian National University researchers found a white dwarf – the dense remains of a star, that our sun will be in billions of years – gorging on a brown dwarf companion which is 10 times smaller.

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Associated Press
The results are finally in for the first chocolate chip cookie bake-off in space. While looking more or less normal, the best cookies required two hours of baking time last month up at the International Space Station. It takes far less time on Earth, under 20 minutes.

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Atlas Obscura
On December 11, 2019, NASA’s Terra satellite pictured the Etosha Pan looking dry, and the surrounding vegetation appearing patchy. By January 17, 2020, the same area was more watery and verdan

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The Guardian
Nasa could return to launching American astronauts from US soil as early as the spring now that the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule has completed a high-altitude abort test.

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Space
And then there were nine. NASA has chosen nine finalists in the student naming contest for its next Mars rover, which currently goes by the bland Mars 2020 (a reference to its launch window, which extends from July through August of this year).

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The Economist ($)
If people are to travel extensively in space and set up bases on astronomical objects such as the Moon and Mars then they will need to make or find out there the things required to support life—including food, water and breathable air

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ESA
Solar Orbiter will orbit our nearest star, the Sun, observing it up close. It will take the first-ever direct images of its poles, while also studying the inner heliosphere – the bubble-like region around the Sun created by the stream of energised, charged particles released in the solar wind.

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NASA
As one window to the universe closes, another will open with an even better view. Some of the same planets, stars and galaxies we first saw through the first window will appear in even sharper detail in the one that will soon open.

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The Conversation
Scientists have discovered over 4,000 exoplanets outside of our Solar System, according to NASA’s Exoplanet Archive. Some of these planets orbit multiple stars at the same time. Certain planets are so close to their star that it takes only a handful of days to make one revolution, compared to the Earth which takes 365.25 days.

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University of Bern
More than 30 years ago, the European comet mission Giotto flew past Halley’s comet. The Bernese ion mass spectrometer IMS, led by Prof. em. Hans Balsiger, was onboard. A key finding from the measurements taken by this instrument was that there appeared to be a lack of nitrogen in Halley’s coma – the nebulous covering of comets which forms when a comet passes close to the Sun.

Editor’s Note: Space science involves not just looking at comets, but figuring out what they are made of. Here researchers from the University of Bern talk about why there was a lack of nitrogen in Halley’s comet.

NASA
At 1:33 p.m. EST, Expedition 61 Flight Engineers Jessica Meir and Christina Koch of NASA concluded their third spacewalk together. During the six hour and 58-minute spacewalk, the two NASA astronauts successfully completed the battery upgrade for one channel on one pair of the station’s solar arrays.

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Business Insider
SpaceX is poised to launch its first astronauts into space this spring: Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley. Their flight on the company’s Crew Dragon spaceship will mark the first time an American spacecraft has carried NASA astronauts since the Space Shuttle program ended in 2011.

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Space
Phantom Express won’t get off the ground after all. Boeing has withdrawn from Experimental Spaceplane (XSP), a U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) program designed to increase the nation’s access to space.

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