Tesla Motors has been getting plenty of attention lately because of its heated back-and-forth with New York Times writer John Broder, but that only helped to drown out news concerning founder Elon Musk’s other transport-related venture. NASA announced earlier today that SpaceX’s Dragon capsule would be sent into low Earth orbit for a second supply run to the International Space Station on March 1. → Read More
Getting a glimpse into the lives of astronauts in space has been de rigueur since the days of the Apollo program, but actually interacting with those busy space-dwellers? That’s a much more modern trend, and one that NASA seems eager to continue.
To that end, NASA recently announced that U.S. astronauts Kevin Ford and Tom Marshburn and Chris Hadfield of the Canadian Space Agency would be… → Read More
Today, after 133 launches spanning nearly three decades, the era of the Space Shuttle is set to close with one final launch. Atlantis is currently on the launchpad, fueled, loaded with her four man crew and ready to delivery supplies to the ISS. It’s a bittersweet day as an exciting time in the US’s space history comes to a close, but unfortunately due to budget constraints rather than replacement… → Read More
Think Arizona’s dust storm was huge? Check out the Great White Spot on Saturn. What first started as a small but bright dot last December, has grown to a massive storm that is currently encompassing a vast part of the planet’s upper half. The Cassini spacecraft first picked it up on December 5, 2010 and then astronomers then noticed the bright dot. Cassini then observed lightning… → Read More
After the retirement of the Shuttle program, NASA will begin flying along with – and funding – multiple “commercial crews” including Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin group and Elon Musk’s SpaceX. NASA is paying out $270 million to SpaceX, Blue Origin, Sierra Nevada (not the beer) and Boeing. This program, begun in 2009 and is now vitally important as it pairs NASA’s scientists and astronauts with… → Read More
30 years ago today the Space Shuttle Columbia blasted off on the first shuttle mission. Two missions ended in disaster, but a total of five different shuttles spent a collective 1289 days in space over 132 missions. The program is set for retirement after Atlantis’ final voyage later this month. The three remaining shuttles, along with the Enterprise prototype, are going to need cozy homes.
Of… → Read More
The kids over at BoingBoing (lucky stiffs) got invited to NASA’s labs to check out the next Mars rover, Curiosity. They’ve got a ton of great pics over there, so check it out. Meanwhile, still no word from Spirit. Damn your sandy environment, Mars! → Read More
Get ready for a nuclear-powered spacecraft—maybe! The Russian Federal Space Agency says that it will hold talks with Nasa and a number of countries on April 15 to see if they can’t get started on creating a “nuclear engine” by 2012. Such an engine, it’s believed, would only cost around $600m to develop. → Read More
The final Endeavour launch — which could be the final space shuttle launch — was slated for April 19th but had to be moved 10 days primarily because of a scheduling conflict. The Russian resupply space vehicle is also scheduled to be docked at the International Space Station during that time and the station is not outfitted to support two docked vehicles. Apparently Russia doesn’t know how to… → Read More