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NASA's Ron Garan Answers the Question on Every Space Explorer's Mind: 'To the Moon or to Mars?' - VIDEO

Garan

In a new Big Think video, former NASA astronaut Ron Garan answers the question "Should we go to the Moon or should we go to Mars?" with a resounding "both".

Garan, who was a crew member on the Discovery back in 2008, elaborates:

Moon"I’d say it would probably be 10 to 15 years from the time we make a decision to go to Mars we could probably get to Mars. But by making a decision that means we’ve allocated the necessary funding, et cetera, et cetera. But another path to Mars would be to go to the moon first. And by going to the moon first – and what I mean by that is by establishing a transportation infrastructure between the Earth and the moon and a permanent human presence on the moon."

Hear Garan's full, fascinating response, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "NASA's Ron Garan Answers the Question on Every Space Explorer's Mind: 'To the Moon or to Mars?' - VIDEO" »


Amazing Footage Shows Failed Landing, Crash, Explosion of SpaceX Rocket on Drone Barge: VIDEO

Spacex_landing

Yesterday, we watched the magnificent lift-off of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket as it hauled supplies to the International Space Station. What wasn't broadcast live was the attempt to land the first stage of the rocket on a drone barge in the Atlantic Ocean.

Now, footage has been released from a chase plane that shows the failed landing and explosion. The landing was unfortunately a bit too hard. Better luck next time.

SpaceX's Elon Musk says they'll try again before the year is out.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Amazing Footage Shows Failed Landing, Crash, Explosion of SpaceX Rocket on Drone Barge: VIDEO" »


Watch LIVE: SpaceX Falcon 9 Set for Lift-off, Landing Attempt of Reusable Rocket

Falcon9

The SpaceX rocket Falcon 9 is scheduled for lift-off at 4:10 pm EDT today. It is carrying the Dragon spacecraft with two tons of supplies headed for the International Space Station.

Once again, shortly after the launch SpaceX will attempt to successfully land the first stage of the rocket vertically on a drone barge floating in the Atlantic. Previous attempts have failed (exploding on the barge), so a good landing will be a groundbreaking moment for reusable spacecraft.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

UPDATE: The rocket stage landing on the drone barge has failed, but it was close.

Continue reading "Watch LIVE: SpaceX Falcon 9 Set for Lift-off, Landing Attempt of Reusable Rocket" »


NASA's New Horizons Spacecraft Releases First Color Image of Pluto and its Moon Charon

Pluto

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft is setting up to make an historic fly-by of Pluto on July 14. NASA today released this first-ever color photo from the probe of Pluto with its largest moon Charon.

Writes NASA:

This image of Pluto and its largest moon, Charon, was taken by the Ralph color imager aboard NASA's New Horizons spacecraft on April 9 and downlinked to Earth the following day. It is the first color image ever made of the Pluto system by a spacecraft on approach. The image is a preliminary reconstruction, which will be refined later by the New Horizons science team. Clearly visible are both Pluto and the Texas-sized Charon. The image was made from a distance of about 71 million miles (115 million kilometers)-roughly the distance from the Sun to Venus. At this distance, neither Pluto nor Charon is well resolved by the color imager, but their distinctly different appearances can be seen. As New Horizons approaches its flyby of Pluto on July 14, it will deliver color images that eventually show surface features as small as a few miles across.

We'll hopefully be getting some amazing images later this year.


If You Think Your Job is Stressful, Listen to the Man Who Landed a Spacecraft on a Comet: VIDEO

Rosetta

Back in August the world watched in wonder as the European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft made the first-ever rendezvous with a comet after an extraordinary mission which saw the probe go into and be taken out of hibernation.

At this year's TED conference Rosetta mission manager Fred Jansen, who was responsible for the landing, revealed some of the harrowing moments and the intricacies and the funny moments involved in landing on a an object 500 km from Earth moving at 135,000 km per hour after a ten year trip through deep space.

Watch his story and description of the incredible day the craft landed, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "If You Think Your Job is Stressful, Listen to the Man Who Landed a Spacecraft on a Comet: VIDEO" »


Jason Momoa's Pecs Defend Hawaii's Mauna Kea: PHOTO

Momoa

Actor Jason Momoa and his pecs took to Instagram this week to defend Hawaii's Mauna Kea volcano from construction of a massive telescope. Protests against the project have been growing, spurred on by social media.


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