AerospaceThe technology and science of commercial and military air and space flight
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In the history of aviation, there were ideas that didn’t quite work out. Take the Avro VZ-9-AV Avrocar, one of ten odd aircraft profiled in the Smithsonian Channel film “Unbelievable Flying Objects.” (It’s number 5). The U.S. Air Force became interested in the Avrocar as an early “stealth” aircraft that could hover beneath radar, then [...]
May 17, 2011 | By Rebecca Maksel
A perennial hand-wringing topic among policy geeks is America’s decline in math and science proficiency. This sentiment has been expressed the entire 30 years I’ve worked on space science and exploration – new generations don’t care about space, can’t do math and science, can’t think properly and ...
May 14, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
A post-splashdown scandal did not undermine the mission’s scientific achievements.
May 13, 2011 | By Diane Tedeschi
Plenty of buzz going around about the mysterious stealth chopper left behind by U.S. Navy SEALs after they shot and killed Osama bin Laden last Monday morning, local time, in Pakistan.Having suffered technical problems and a hard landing, the helo apparently couldn't fly back out of bin Laden's com...
May 06, 2011 | By Mike Klesius
Who can forget billionaire ex-spaceman Jeff Tracy and his five sons (Scott, Virgil, Alan, Gordon, and John), each named after a Mercury astronaut? Remember how they—through their organization (International Rescue)—um...rescued people...internationally? Ok, so they were puppets. Deal with it, peop...
May 05, 2011 | By Rebecca Maksel
The first American spaceflight was a triumph—for an astronaut and for a nation.
May 05, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
Apollo 17 Commander Eugene Cernan recently voiced his doubts and concerns over the future of the human spaceflight program, while former Lockheed-Martin CEO Norman Augustine reflected on the current state of our space “vision” and/or the possible lack thereof. I found these perspectives by two gia...
May 04, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
Apollo astronaut Gene Cernan thinks the notion of a one-way trip to Mars is "a ridiculous concept...That's not the kind of people we are." And he's hardly alone in that view.Every time the subject of one-way Mars expeditions comes up, it reminds me, in a perverse way, of Ambrose Bierce's great Civi...
May 04, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
Air traffic controllers have been in the news several times in the past month. First came the "asleep in the tower" stories at Washington National Airport and Reno, Nevada. Then the First Lady's airplane had to go around at Andrews AFB because it was too close to other traffic. The 24-hour news mon...
May 02, 2011 | By Steve Satre
Late in 2014, a radically different type of rocket propulsion is set to show up on the International Space station for a period of experimentation.The technology is called the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR). It's a rocket engine that uses electricity to ionize a gas such as...
May 02, 2011 | By Mike Klesius
A remote-piloted warrior starts flying for science.
May 2011 | By Kara Platoni
A community of alternative rocketeers who may one day dominate the space biz.
May 2011 | By Stephen Joiner
...And the high-tech horse it rode in on.
May 2011 | By Dino Brugioni
25 years later, it's a complicated relationship.
May 2011 | By The Editors
From engine fumes to exhilaration, here’s what to expect.
May 2011 | By Phil Scott
The year we were born.
May 2011 | By Paul Hoversten
Think of it as a crash course in aeronautical trivia.
May 2011 | By The Editors
Fifty years ago, Yuri Gagarin left earth. When he came back, everything changed.
May 2011 | By Allen Abel
May 2011 | By J.R. Dailey
Mission: Cuba. Status: Top secret.
May 2011 | By James Storie