Want to explore the Solar System? Well you’re going to need to brush up on international space law before you leave the planet, and that means studying the “Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestia
We’re all clamoring to get into space these days, but lost in our excitement to fly to the Moon and colonize Mars is a brutal truth: the final frontier is a cold, inhospitable wasteland that’ll kill you at the first opportunity it gets.
Long before NASA, private individuals and communities banded together for the pursuit of geopolitical power and scientific discovery. Many turned out to watch Venus pass across the face of the sun, a tiny, black dot moving against a white-hot backdrop.
Hutchinson, Kansas isn’t the kind of place you’d wind up if you weren’t looking to. The placid prairie town sits a solid hour’s drive south of I-70, the interstate that most travelers use to blow across 425 miles of Kansas cornfield and cattle pasture as quickly as possible.
President Donald Trump is obsessed with returning America to its coal mining past—but scientists and entreprenurs have far more ambitious plans. As the planet’s precious metal reserves tap out, big business and NASA are looking to the skies.
A space ship filled with humans slumbering in cryogenic chambers encounters catastrophic troubles in deep space.
Elon Musk and SpaceX had one hell of a weekend. While much of the country celebrated the summer weekend at the beach or enjoying time with friends, SpaceX was hard at work launching two rockets for customers, one from the East Coast and one from the West Coast.
This is Part 3 of a four-part series on Elon Musk’s companies. For an explanation of why this series is happening and how Musk is involved, start with Part 1. Pre-Post Note: I started working on this post ten weeks ago. When I started, I never intended for it to become such an ordeal.
Explanation: Hot, young stars and cosmic pillars of gas and dust seem to crowd into NGC 7822. At the edge of a giant molecular cloud toward the northern constellation Cepheus, this glowing star forming region lies about 3,000 light-years away.
February 1, 2016: One of the most tragic events in the history of space exploration is the loss of the space shuttle Columbia and all seven of its crew on February 1, 2003—a tragedy made worse because it didn’t have to happen.
Explanation: Where did all these high energy positrons come from? The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS-02) onboard the International Space Station (ISS) has been meticulously recording how often it is struck by both high energy electrons and positrons since 2011.
There's a terrible power to the iconic pictures of the space shuttle Challenger exploding — the orange-white fireball in the Florida sky, with the twin contrails of the solid rocket boosters briefly continuing on their journey to nowhere. It's been 30 years since that awful morning on Jan.
Spearheading the sustainable energy movement. Attempting to solve rush hour traffic. Exploring the unknown regions of outer space. Responding to fans (and critics) on social media. To say billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk is keeping busy would surely be an understatement.
This is my lunar acre. There are many like it, billions, but this one is mine. At least, it could be for a modest fee: a steal at $19.95 through Cosmic Registry, $19.99 through Lunar Embassy, or ‘prices to fit any budget’ through Lunar Registry, depending on the quality of the neighbourhood.
Ernst Stuhlinger wrote this letter on May 6, 1970, to Sister Mary Jucunda, a nun who worked among the starving children of Kabwe, Zambia, in Africa, who questioned the value of space exploration. At the time Dr.
Ona rocket launched toward Mars. It was India’s first interplanetary mission, Mangalyaan, and a terrific gamble. Only 40 percent of missions sent to Mars by major space organizations — NASA, Russia’s, Japan’s, or China’s — had ever been a success.
Explanation: How was this picture taken? Usually, pictures of the shuttle, taken from space, are snapped from the space station. Commonly, pictures of the space station are snapped from the shuttle.
Humanity began in Africa. But we didn’t stay there, not all of us—over thousands of years our ancestors walked all over the continent, then out of it. And when they came to the sea, they built boats and sailed tremendous distances to islands they could not have known were there. Why?
You never see it in those lovely NASA pictures of Earth, but the space surrounding our pale blue dot is a cosmic junkyard. Debris abounds, moving at ludicrous speeds and presenting plenty of hassles for satellite operators who do business in orbit.
With 2015 now behind us, what truly stands out? Other than (alas) holding the record for hottest year in recorded history? Amid a confusion of good, bad, and disturbing news, what I find noteworthy is that 2015 was by far humanity’s best year in space—exploring the universe around us.
This story has been corrected. The Space Exploration Technology rocket factory is a large, white hangar-like building near Los Angeles international airport, with a parking lot filled with late-model motorcycles and Tesla electric cars.
The Liberian flag is easy to mistake for the U.S. flag. There’s the red, white and blue. There’s the stripes. The only difference is that the Liberian flag features one star in the upper left corner, instead of 50 — a legacy of the coastal West African country’s origins as a U.S. colony.
There’s no way to anticipate the emotional impact of leaving your home planet. You look down at Earth and realize: You’re not on it. It’s breathtaking. It’s surreal. It’s a “we’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto” kind of feeling.
Hundreds of you sent in questions for Skunk Bear's live conversation with three astronauts and NASA's chief scientist on Tuesday. Thanks! The most common question was: "What happens when you get your period in space?" But since people were genuinely curious, I decided to answer it here.
When Josh was 10 years old, he sat cross-legged on the floor in his parent’s neat, suburban home in Australia, enraptured. It was May 1996 and Andy Thomas had just stepped out of the space shuttle Endeavour and onto the tarmac of Runway 33 of the Kennedy Space Center.
IT MAY turn out to be a bare and barren rock. The fact that liquid water could be flowing across the surface of the planet just discovered orbiting Proxima Centauri, the nearest star to the sun, does not mean that any actually is—nor for that matter that it has an atmosphere.
An exploration of life aboard the International Space Station, and the surprising reasons the mission is still worthwhile When humans move to space, we are the aliens, the extraterrestrials. And so, living in space, the oddness never quite goes away. Consider something as elemental as sleep.
Node-3 Tranquillity provides life-support for the International Space Station. Part of Tranquility is ESA's Cupola observation module, a seven-window dome-shaped structure from where the Space Station's robotic arm, Canadarm 2, is operated as it offers a panoramic view of space and Earth.
Russian photographer and urban explorer Ralph Mirebs just published one of the saddest photoseries on space exploration.
Elon Musk laid out his plan to colonize Mars at a conference on Tuesday, but it was during the Q&A session that a woman asked one of the key questions: who will be chosen to embark on a risky trip to colonize a harsh planet? The SpaceX CEO had two answers to this line of questioning.
When NPR reported Bob Ebeling's story on the 30th anniversary of the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger, hundreds of listeners and readers expressed distress and sympathy in letters and emails. On Jan.
We are excited to announce that SpaceX has been approached to fly two private citizens on a trip around the Moon late next year. They have already paid a significant deposit to do a Moon mission.
It was time for the spent rocket to die. So the 2,000kg Centaur upper stage, about the size of a yellow school bus, detached from its spacecraft and began falling toward the Moon six years ago. Soon lunar gravity took hold, tugging the Centaur ever faster toward the Moon’s inky black South Pole.
You love space gifs. Your weird engineering buddy loves space gifs.
Barack Obama is President of the United States. (CNN)One of my earliest memories is sitting on my grandfather's shoulders, waving a flag as our astronauts returned to Hawaii. This was years before we'd set foot on the moon. Decades before we'd land a rover on Mars.
Many of those pilots recounted positive feelings, even as they started making dangerous mistakes. Feelings like awe, reverence, and a sense of calm and "separation from the problems of the world" could all force them to take their aircraft into an unplanned maneuver.
On January 28, 1986, America watched on television as the space shuttle Challenger—carrying six astronauts and one schoolteacher—disappeared in a twisting cloud of smoke, nine miles above the launch pad it had just left. To a stunned nation, it appeared that seven lives had instantly been lost.
In Florida, at the Kennedy Space Center, Molly White is cheering with her sister.
NASA will try again on Saturday morning to inflate a new room for the International Space Station. During the first attempt on Thursday to pump air into the module known as the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module, or Beam, the bulbous, balloon-like structure did not expand as much as expected.
India's space programme has succeeded at the first attempt where others have failed - by sending an operational mission to Mars. The Mangalyaan satellite was confirmed to be in orbit shortly after 0800, Indian time. It is, without doubt, a considerable achievement.
The story behind NASA's brief embrace of extraterrestrial sherry is a curious one. In the early seventies, the agency's focus was shifting from short, Moon-focused missions to the possibility of longer-term inhabitation of space.
Fifty years ago today, the United States, the Soviet Union, and the United Kingdom opened a treaty for signature that would become the backbone for international space law.
Space. It’s a funny thing. Kubrick knew that.
Neil deGrasse Tyson has a unique talent for translating the complicated and vast history of space into simple, digestible bits for layfolk like us, whether through breakfasts with Pluto and hundreds of NASA fans or his revival of Carl Sagan's classic docu-series Cosmos.
NASA is far from a perfect government agency. As former space shuttle program manager Wayne Hale recently noted, NASA is hobbled by three major problems—rivalries between field centers, "mind-numbing" bureaucracy, and a "paralyzing" cultural requirement for perfection in all things.
Halfway through the European Space Agency's new film, we're at the part where — if this were some happy space documentary from yesteryear — Carl Sagan might be giving us a tour of a distant galaxy. But it's 2017, Sagan is dead, and this is a film about space trash.
WASHINGTON — Jeff Bezos, the billionaire chief executive of Amazon, founded a rocket company as a hobby 16 years ago. Now that company, Blue Origin, finally has its first paying customer as it ramps up to become a full-fledged business. Mr.
My eyes are closed as I listen to Chris counting down the atmospheric pressure inside the airlock – it’s close to zero now. But I’m not tired – quite the reverse! I feel fully charged, as if electricity and not blood were running through my veins.
Explanation: What's happening to this spiral galaxy? Just a few hundred million years ago, NGC 2936, the upper of the two large galaxies shown, was likely a normal spiral galaxy -- spinning, creating stars -- and minding its own business.
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. — A Falcon 9 rocket roared into the sky on Saturday carrying 10 communications satellites — a return by SpaceX and its billionaire leader, Elon Musk, to the business of launching satellites to orbit.
Thanks to reddit, we discovered this amazing photo essay by Ralph Mirebs from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakstan.
Explanation: To some, it may look like a cat's eye. The alluring Cat's Eye nebula, however, lies three thousand light-years from Earth across interstellar space. A classic planetary nebula, the Cat's Eye (NGC 6543) represents a final, brief yet glorious phase in the life of a sun-like star.
One by one they flickered to life. Venus, first, in 1962, and two and a half years later, Mars. Our spacecraft flew by those planets, orbited them, and became manmade meteors streaking toward the first soil we couldn’t generically call "earth.
Explanation: Many spiral galaxies have bars across their centers. Even our own Milky Way Galaxy is thought to have a modest central bar. Prominently barred spiral galaxy NGC 1672, featured here, was captured in spectacular detail in an image taken by the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope.
The plainly-named Space Launch System is designed to take astronauts further into space than ever before Artist's rendering of NASA's Space Launch System (credit: NASA/MSFC) NASA has worked on some inspiring interplanetary projects in the last few years, b
It all started back in 1996 when a group of astronomers pointed the Hubble Space Telescope at an empty patch in the sky close to the Big Dipper in hopes of seeing something, anything. At the time, it was considered to be a risky move, given that demand for use of the telescope was so high.
In November 2014, a strange-looking little spider of a spacecraft caught the world's attention. It may have been one of the oddest-looking pioneers of all time, resembling a mini-refrigerator attached to an insect's legs.