VIDEO: This Week at NASA Features Quiet Supersonic Flight, Supplies to the ISS and the Farthest Star Ever Seen

By  //  April 8, 2018

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X-plane reduces a sonic boom to a gentle thump

ABOVE VIDEO: Building the future of quiet supersonic flight,  Science and supplies delivered to the space station and uncovering the farthest star ever seen – a few of the stories to tell you about – This Week at NASA.

(NASA) – NASA Selects Lockheed Martin to Build X-Plane

We’ve selected Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company to design, build and test the Low-Boom Flight Demonstration supersonic experimental aircraft, or X-plane that reduces a sonic boom… to a gentle thump.

Work is expected to last through Dec. 2021 – followed by flights over select U.S. cities, starting in mid-2022 to collect data about community responses to the flights.

Science Launched to Space Station

More than 5,800 pounds of scientific experiments and supplies were delivered to the International Space Station on April 4 to support dozens of the more than 250 investigations aboard the space station.

The experiments deal with how the human body, plants and materials behave in space. SpaceX’s Dragon resupply spacecraft delivered the cargo – two days after it was launched from Florida. This is the company’s 14th resupply mission to the station.

Hubble Uncovers the Farthest Star Ever Seen

Our Hubble Space Telescope has uncovered the farthest individual star ever seen. The enormous blue star – nicknamed Icarus – is located more than halfway across the universe and would normally be too faint to view, even with the largest telescopes.

But thanks to a quirk of nature called gravitational lensing that tremendously amplifies the star’s feeble glow, Hubble was able to spot the star. Icarus is so far away that its light has taken 9 billion years to reach Earth.

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Chandra Studies Cosmic Cold Front

Our Chandra X-ray Observatory has been used to study a cosmic cold front located in the Perseus galaxy cluster that extends for about two million light-years or about 10 billion miles.

The cold front consists of a “cool” band of gas – that is about 30 million degrees, moving through hot gas that is about 80 million degrees. It formed about 5 billion years ago and has been traveling at speeds of about 300,000 miles per hour ever since.

That’s what’s up this week @NASA …