For the first time since the retirement of the space shuttle in 2011, NASA says it may soon have the capability to send astronauts to the International Space Station from U.S. soil. Critical milestones are on the horizon for Boeing and SpaceX, the space agency's commercial crew partners: Flight tests of their spacecraft, including crewed missions, are planned for 2018.
Imagine more than 600 days in space; that's 21 months cruising the cosmos, or close to two years without flush toilets or pizza. On Saturday, Astronaut Peggy Whitson touched down in Kazakhstan at 9:21 p.m. EDT alongside a fellow American and a Russian in their Soyuz capsule, wrapping up a record-breaking mission.
An atomic rocket has the potential to move more mass a much greater distance than traditional chemical propulsion. SpaceX will have its Falcon Heavy rocket in service within a year or two, making it the most powerful launch platform since the retirement of NASA’s Saturn V. But even the Falcon Heavy will only be able to lift 37,000 pounds (16,800 kg) to Mars.
The jets will fly 70 miles apart, one in front of the other as they fly through the total eclipse zone that runs from Oregon to South Carolina. The jets, however, are launching from NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. They’ll meet up with the eclipse 50,000 feet above Missouri, and will keep with it as it passes over Illinois and Tennessee.
On August 6 2012, NASA’s Curiosity rover landed on Mars and kicked off a new era of Martian exploration. It was NASA’s fourth rover mission to Mars over the past 20 years; previous missions successfully landed the Sojurner, Spirit, and Opportunity rovers. Curiosity represented a far more difficult undertaking than its predecessors.
Children all over the world can connect with astronauts aboard the space station via Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS), and with the help of volunteer ham operators. ARISS delegates from the United States, Russia, Canada, Europe and Japan help connect the world, from Senegal to Cincinnati, with the station. These contacts endeavor to inspire youth worldwide to pursue science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) interests and careers.
U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren (IL-14), member of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee and co-chairman of the STEM Education Caucus, today welcomed a report from NASA on their plans and programs to education and inspire the next generation of women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers.
NASA launched its newest app this week designed to motivate the average person to be a citizen scientist during the upcoming solar eclipse. Space Scientist Elizabeth Macdonald told Fox News the Globe Observer app was designed by a NASA-supported research program called the Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment, better known as GLOBE.
Speakers from NCAR, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and NASA highlighted how networks of ground-based telescopes, GPS sensors, and radio receivers, as well as specialized instruments on aircraft, satellites, and space-based observatories, will be used to observe the Sun during the eclipse.
Both NASA and the two companies developing commercial crew vehicles say those efforts remain on schedule for test flights that are in some cases less than a year away. NASA published July 20 what it called "the most recent publicly-releasable dates" of the test flights of Boeing's CST-100 Starliner and SpaceX's Crew Dragon vehicles.