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A revolutionary new space launch idea: Introducing The Pythagoras Sling

September 14th, 2018 at 9:50 am » Comments Off

The Pythagoras Sling uses a lengthy graphene string pulled via two hoops suspended from simple parachutes to rapidly accelerate a projectile into orbit. Graphene string will likely become widely available over the next two decades. If it works as expected, the Pythagoras Sling launch system could greatly reduce the cost of getting into space compared […]



Can we get into space without big rockets?

September 4th, 2018 at 9:54 am » Comments Off

Since humans began putting satellites into orbit in the 1950s, we’ve relied upon big, powerful rockets to escape Earth’s gravity and get into space. But big rockets have a major downside, in that they make space launches expensive. Case in point: NASA’s Space Launch System heavy lift rocket, which is scheduled for its maiden flight […]



Want a future-proof degree? Head to Colorado for asteroid mining

August 28th, 2018 at 8:10 am » Comments Off

Are you a high schooler wondering what career to pursue that won’t be gobbled up by robots in the next few years? Are you an engineering grad, economist, physicist, or policy analyst looking to become an expert in a new, but fast-developing discipline? If so, the Colorado School of Mines has the perfect answer for […]



This astrophysicist explains the surprisingly complex concept of ‘nothing’

August 27th, 2018 at 10:18 am » Comments Off

Philosophers have debated the nature of “nothing” for thousands of years, but what has modern science got to say about it? In an interview with The Conversation, Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal and Emeritus Professor of Cosmology and Astrophysics at the University of Cambridge, explains that when physicists talk about nothing, they mean empty space (vacuum). […]



Supersized solar farms are sprouting around the world (and maybe in space, too)

August 24th, 2018 at 8:59 am » Comments Off

In a quest to cut the cost of clean electricity, power utilities around the world are supersizing their solar farms. Nowhere is that more apparent than in southern Egypt, where what will be the world’s largest solar farm — a vast collection of more than 5 million photovoltaic panels — is now taking shape. When […]



The race to get tourists to suborbital space is heating up

July 14th, 2018 at 9:53 am » Comments Off

SPACE: FINAL FRONTIER or ultimate tourist destination? Possibly both—provided you have the cash. Already, you can buy tickets for (as-yet-unscheduled) flights aboard SpaceShipTwo, the crew vehicle developed by Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic. And at a NewSpace conference in Seattle last month, Blue Origin—helmed by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos—announced that it has plans to sell tickets […]



SpaceX is flying an artificially intelligent robot named CIMON to the International Space Station

July 5th, 2018 at 10:18 am » Comments Off

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. — Unlike HAL, it won’t be able to open the pod bay doors. Its programming is limited, capable of conversation and technical support but not much else, at least for now. And instead of the searing red eye of the super computer gone rogue in Stanley Kubrick’s sci-fi film, “2001: A […]



Jeff Bezos’Blue Origin will start selling tickets to space next year

June 29th, 2018 at 9:54 am » Comments Off

Blue Origin, the space-tourism startup owned by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, says it will start selling passenger tickets for trips into space in 2019. The timeline came from Blue Origin senior vice president Rob Meyerson, whose comments at an Amazon Web Services event were reported by Space News. Meyerson did not say how much the tickets […]



NASA is learning the best way to grow food in space

June 21st, 2018 at 10:55 am » Comments Off

Can gardens help astronauts go farther? “Our plants aren’t looking too good,” astronaut Scott Kelly tweeted from the International Space Station on December 27, 2015. He was right: The attached picture showed four baby zinnias bathed in magenta light. Three of the four leafy stalks were discolored and curling in on themselves. The station’s garden […]



Majority of Americans believe it is essential that the U.S. remain a global leader in space

June 19th, 2018 at 10:12 am » Comments Off

Despite the increasing role of private companies in space exploration, most believe NASA’s role is still vital for future. Sixty years after the founding of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), most Americans believe the United States should be at the forefront of global leadership in space exploration. Majorities say the International Space Station […]



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