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Space exploration and travel

Space salt, Martian clay, and unexpected X-rays feature in this month's slideshow.

Abigail Malate, Staff Illustrator

The photo shows more than 15 lettuce plants growing atop two rows of boxes with black tops, green leaves spreading out from the center, as tubing curls between the boxes.

Scientists are trying to perfect a technique for growing crops in space so that astronauts have enough food to get to Mars and back.

Benjamin Plackett, Contributor

An assortment of twinkling images of space, stars and spacecrafts.

Abigail Malate, Staff Illustrator

View new pictures of Mars, the last picture of the dwarf planet Ceres and images of the brightest galaxy in the universe.

Abigail Malate, Staff Illustrator

A team of engineers spent years giving new life to old NASA tapes.

Catherine Meyers, Editor

Enjoy illustrations of pulsar winds, the planet Vulcan and galactic ripples.

Abigail Malate, Staff Illustrator

Food scientists are developing food for astronauts that stays nutritious and fresh for at least three years.

Rebecca Boyle, Contributor

As summer winds down, savor images from some of the hottest, most magnetic, and awe-inspiring places in the universe.

Abigail Malate, Staff Illustrator

A new study suggests also looking for "bioessential" elements when searching for alien life.

Charles Q. Choi, Contributor

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