Governmental Aerospace ProgramsThe Federal Aviation Administration, air mail, space programs and military aviation
When radio communication took to the air.
March 2011 | By George C. Larson, Member, NAA
A fleet of winged spacecraft, the likes of which we'll never see again.
March 01, 2011 | By Michael Klesius
A seemingly trivial event has revealed some schadenfreude about NASA, along with a lot of irritation. Apparently (as is their wont) the fertile minds running our national space agency decided that the time has come (once again) for a new and improved vision statement – out with the old and in with...
February 23, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
Busy days in Earth orbit.Space Shuttle Discovery is set to make its last voyage tomorrow, with liftoff planned for 4:50 p.m. Florida time. If all goes according to plan, Europe's Johannes Kepler unmanned cargo vehicle will have docked with the space station earlier in the day (at 10:45 U.S. Eastern...
February 23, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
"Those who have never seen a living Martian can scarcely imagine the strange horror of its appearance.... Even at this first encounter, this first glimpse, I was overcome with disgust and dread." —H.G. Wells, War of the Worlds, 1898.Wells wasn't alone in thinking Red Planet Dwellers would be a comp...
February 10, 2011 | By Rebecca Maksel
The X-47B, an unmanned combat vehicle being developed by Northrop Grumman for the U.S. Navy, made a successful first flight at California's Edwards Air Force Base on February 4.The X-47B is no small toy—it's about the size of the retired Grumman F-14 Tomcat. It will continue to work toward the ...
February 07, 2011 | By Mike Klesius
The F-111, beloved by pilots in America and Australia, takes to the air for the last time.
January 31, 2011 | By Michael Klesius
No, it's not some freakish genetics experiment. It's NASA's Super Guppy transport hauling around a couple of T-38s. Read about it here.
January 26, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
Balkan military officials report that China's new stealth fighter might have some technology acquired from a Lockheed Martin F-117 Nighthawk that was shot down over Serbia in 1999.Whoever recently took this footage of the new fighter doing high-speed taxi tests gets plenty fired up about it around ...
January 25, 2011 | By Mike Klesius
It was "the end of innocence," according to veteran space shuttle commander Hoot Gibson—the last flight before the Challenger tragedy, which shocked the nation less than two weeks later and changed the course of the shuttle program.On that evening, though, 25 years ago exactly, the mood was all upb...
January 18, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
A real comedy of errors and misunderstandings collided this week between the new NASA Authorization Act of 2010 and the agency’s Human Exploration Framework Team (HEFT) Congressionally mandated 90-day report (their initial findings on how to implement agency direction). Though flush with the usua...
January 14, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
Had you heard about it? It's a NASA mission, the largest airborne survey ever carried out to measure Earth's polar ice. Scientists plan to build a three-dimensional model of Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets, ice shelves, and sea ice in an effort to bridge the gap in polar observations by one NASA sa...
January 11, 2011 | By Mike Klesius
As in any year, there are winners and losers in the 2012 Pentagon budget announced yesterday. The Defense Department plans to buy more Reaper unmanned drones, but the Marine Corps' short takeoff and landing version of the F-35 was put on two-year "probation," and may not happen at all. Pretty stand...
January 07, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
In civil engineering, one of the most important material resources on Earth is “construction aggregate” – the sand, gravel and cement building materials that make up the infrastructure of modern industrial life. Aggregate is easily one of the biggest, most valuable economic resources of all mined ...
January 05, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
How engineers altered a jumbo jet to carry the world's biggest airborne telescope.
January 2011 | By Trudy E. Bell
How the U.S. military is training Afghans to fly.
January 2011 | By Stewart Nusbaumer
Man cannot zoom by blended wing alone; he must have an engine that, well, works.
January 2011 | By Stephan Wilkinson
For U.S. airmen trapped in Yugoslavia during World War II, building a secret airstrip was their only way out.
January 2011 | By Phil Scott
The faces of the Space Shuttle Era.
January 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
We told you all about electromagnetic catapults in this story from January 2007. Now the first airplane has been launched with an EMALS system: an F/A-18E Super Hornet, at a Navy test site in Lakehurst, New Jersey.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=euLsg_viWW0
December 30, 2010 | By Tony Reichhardt