Here they are — the top most visited stories from the past week. A spyware peddler suffers a major hack; experimental artificial heart is a success; 8-minute video of Rover Opportunity’s Epic Mars Marathon; astounding new mosaic image of our Sun’s surface, and a series of intriguing spots along Pluto’s’ equator are all among the top hits.
Fascinating New Color Images Reveal Evenly-spaced Spots along Pluto Equator
New color images from NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft show two very different faces of the mysterious dwarf planet, one with a series of intriguing spots along the equator that are evenly spaced. Each of the spots is about 300 miles in diameter, with a surface area that’s roughly the size of the state of Missouri. Their presence has piqued the interest of scientists, due to the remarkable consistency in their spacing and size.
Flaring, Active Regions of our Sun
Flaring, active regions of our sun are highlighted in this new image combining observations from several telescopes. High-energy X-rays from NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) are shown in blue; low-energy X-rays from Japan’s Hinode spacecraft are green; and extreme ultraviolet light from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) is yellow and red. All three telescopes captured their solar images around the same time.
Time-lapse! 8-minute NASA Video shows Opportunity’s Epic Mars Marathon
NASA has released a new video in which a compilation of images taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity’s hazard-avoidance cameras between January 2004 and April 2015 reveals an awe-inspiring rover’s-eye-view of the 26.2-mile marathon from its landing location, as a corresponding map of the rover’s path appears alongside. Audio is derived from vibration measurements from the rover’s accelerometer.
1st Heart Transplant a Success after using Experimental 50cc Artificial Heart
A petite 44-year-old woman has received a successful heart transplant thanks to an experimental Total Artificial Heart designed for smaller patients. The UCLA patient is the first person in the world with the device to be bridged to a successful heart transplant — that is, to go from needing a transplant to receiving one. The 50cc SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart is a smaller investigational version of the larger 70cc SynCardia.
Milan-based Hacking Team appears to get Hacked
An Italian surveillance company known for selling malicious software used by police bodies and spy agencies appears to have succumbed to a damaging cyberattack that sent documents and invoices ricocheting across the Internet. Hacking Team’s Twitter account appears to have been hijacked late on July 5, 2015, posting screenshots of what were purported to be internal company e-mails and details of secret deals with various world governments.