The AMS, which I blogged about a few weeks ago, is the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer, which was recently installed (earlier today) on the space station by the Shuttle Endeavor’s crew:
(Here it is being taken out of Endeavor’s cargo bay)
Within hours of it being installed it detected at least two high energy particles we’ve only observed within particle accelerators… meaning we’ve never seen them in nature before now.
Its kind of neat when something can get launched, installed, and begin operations without any hiccups.
Its also kind of neat when a space shuttle makes an addition to the space station that is purely for science (not life support or other constructing-a-platform-in-space efforts). Its the kind of stuff we built the space station for, and its great we’re already getting science out of it.
Here’s one of space.com’s infographics that explains what the AMS is and does:
Now to find that ever-elusive ‘stuff’ mucking up our theories. 🙂