Space ProgramsNASA, Soviet and Russian space programs and the International Space Station
An eyewitness recalls one of history's great rocket explosions.
October 26, 2011 | By Pat Trenner
In their efforts to "ignite a new era of lunar exploration," the Google Lunar X Prize wants competitors to reach out through social media so the rest of us can follow along.
October 25, 2011 | By Heather Goss
Three-dimensional printing technology can be used in conjunction with the material and energy resources of the Moon to build new space faring capabilities.
October 24, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
While the "secret-ish" X-37 space plane continues to perform well at over 200 days in orbit, Boeing finally talks details, including a possible human-rated version.
October 14, 2011 | By Heather Goss
With China building its own space station, a veteran U.S. astronaut says it’s time for NASA and its partners to extend an invitation.
October 05, 2011 | By Leroy Chiao
Pretty much all of the Chinese high school students who attended Space Camp last month were exceptional, but two of the 16-year-olds stood out even in select company.
September 26, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
Among the list of things one expects to find while sifting through former President Bill Clinton's stuff, a lost moon rock might be low on the list.
September 23, 2011 | By Heather Goss
We seem to be in one of those periods in which basic reasons for doing what we do as a nation are called into question.
September 17, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
What's a better way to get a new view of a space shuttle launch than using a "whole-sky lens"?
September 13, 2011 | By Heather Goss
Strange days for NASA's astronauts. Their numbers are down—from a peak of 150 in 2000 to just over 60 today. And they just lost their main vehicle, the space shuttle. [...]
September 09, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
Part III: Resource Utilization Considerations In Part I and Part II of this series, I examined some of the operational and scientific issues associated with a human mission to a near Earth asteroid (NEO) and contrasted them with the simpler operations and greater scientific return of a mission to the Moon. To continue the discussion [...]
September 02, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
Part II: Scientific Considerations In my last post, I examined some of the operational considerations associated with a human mission to a near Earth asteroid and how it contrasted with the simpler, easier operations of lunar return. Here, I want to consider what we might do at this destination by focusing on the scientific activities [...]
September 01, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
Ahoy there, Matey! Lately it seems that everywhere you turn, there’s a pirate. There are pirate-themed children’s books: Do Pirates Take Baths? and Pirates Don’t Change Diapers (honey, they don’t even change socks). There’s “International Talk Like a Pirate Day” on September 19, founded by Cap’n Slappy and Ol’ Chumbucket. Your car can sport a [...]
September 01, 2011 | By Rebecca Maksel
Part I: Operational Considerations The current controversy over the direction of our national space program has many dimensions but most of the discourse has focused on the means (government vs. commercial launch vehicles) not the ends (destinations and activities). Near-Earth objects (NEO, i.e., asteroids) became the next destination for human exploration as an alternative to [...]
August 31, 2011 | By Paul D. Spudis
Here’s some more creative space photography from Ron Garan, who’s currently on board the International Space Station. Garan and several other astronauts have teamed up for the Fragile Oasis project, to share the perspective of Earth that they see from orbit. This time-lapse sequence is apparently a sneak peek at a longer version. The Peter [...]
August 30, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
The four orbiters are already taken, but thousands more shuttle-related items are still available—at no cost.
August 29, 2011 | By Mark Betancourt
Got 3-D glasses? Then watch this. According to the European Space Agency, it’s the first live 3-D video ever streamed from space. NASA astronaut Ron Garan is both star and director, and he’s using ESA’s new Erasmus Recording Binocular (ERB-2) camera inside the European Columbus module. ESA plans to start up a 3-D channel on [...]
August 24, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
Three legendary astronauts—Neil Armstrong, Jim Lovell, and Gene Cernan—were in Kabul, Afghanistan, yesterday, meeting with American service men and women as well as young Afghan Air Force trainees. From the NATO press release: “This is the best day of my life!” said Lt. Fatama Abteen, one of a small handful of female Afghan Air Force [...]
August 17, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
Yuri Gagarin, incredibly, didn’t carry a camera on the world’s first spaceflight. Neither did Alan Shepard nor Gus Grissom, whose 15-minute suborbital shots followed Gagarin’s April 1961 launch by three weeks and three months, respectively. The American astronauts were photographed during their missions, but only by automated cameras mounted in the Mercury capsule. So it [...]
August 05, 2011 | By Tony Reichhardt
George Abbey had more influence on human spaceflight than almost anyone in history, but few outside the field know his name.
August 2011 | By Michael Cassutt