Science

NASA’s lunar rover VIPER is training in its sand pit

NASA’s lunar rover VIPER is training in its sand pit

p dir="ltr">When you think of NASA sending rovers out into space, you likely think of the robot explorers on Mars like the Curiosity and Perseverance, both of which were sent to Mars. But while our favorite red planet explorers are out there rolling around at a great distance, the agency has plans to send rovers to other locations as well. This week NASA shared information on their upcoming VIPER mission which will be sent to the moon - our Earth's own nearest neighbor.

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NASA is sending a solar sail spacecraft after an asteroid

NASA is sending a solar sail spacecraft after an asteroid

When NASA launches its uncrewed Artemis I mission to the moon, it will have a small companion along for the ride. At the same time as it carries the Orion capsule (which will orbit the moon), the Space Launch System rocket will also carry a tiny shoebox-sized smallsat called the Near-Earth Asteroid Scout (NEA Scout) which will visit an asteroid. This particularly tiny satellite is quite unusual.

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Solar Orbiter passes through the tail of a comet

Solar Orbiter passes through the tail of a comet

The ESA/NASA Solar Orbiter is currently making a series of swings around the solar system so it can get closer to its eventual target, the Sun. While the scientific laboratory travels, it has the opportunity to investigate some other interesting subjects, too, including a comet it recently had a close encounter with.

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James Webb space telescope’s next moves require mind-boggling precision

James Webb space telescope’s next moves require mind-boggling precision

The James Webb Space Telescope, the next-generation telescope which will be the successor to Hubble, recently arrived at its new home. It will orbit the sun at a point called L2, or the second sun-Earth Lagrange point, from where it will be able to peer out into space and cover the sky in every direction as it moves around the sun.

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NASA’s slippery X-59 supersonic jet aims to revolutionize air travel

NASA’s slippery X-59 supersonic jet aims to revolutionize air travel

NASA has been in the news quite a bit of late. Most recently it has captured global attention with its James Webb Space Telescope launch and journey to its new orbit, while it is also making headlines with its Artemis mission to the moon and beyond along with its ongoing scientific exploits on Mars and elsewhere. This week NASA has a bit of news that remains enthralling despite being relegated to a more Earthbound endeavor. Its stunning X-59 experimental Quiet SuperSonic Technology (QueSST) jet has reached another milestone on its way to lifting the ban on commercial supersonic flight over land.

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NASA Spinoffs 2022 brings space tech back down to us Earthlings

NASA Spinoffs 2022 brings space tech back down to us Earthlings

NASA may be best-known for its role in exploring space and putting men on the moon. What many people may not realize, however, is the agency arguably does more to better life on Earth than it does in the exploration of space. That revelation shouldn't come as a surprise. While the agency's primary mission is focused on space, actually achieving that goal requires a tremendous amount of innovation and out-of-the-box thinking. More often than not, products, services, and methods designed to solve a problem in space have valuable applications here on Earth. In addition to technology developed for space, NASA also focuses some of its development efforts specifically on terrestrial issues humanity is currently facing.

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SpaceX vs. Blue Origin: Who is Winning and Why?

SpaceX vs. Blue Origin: Who is Winning and Why?

Space exploration was once purely the domain of government agencies. First, the United States and the Soviet Union — later Russia — raced to put a human being on the moon (via History). Later, other countries entered the mix. As World Population Review outlines, more than one dozen countries have space programs today, many of which are capable of launch and a smaller subset are working together on ambitious projects like the International Space Station.

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The Origins of the Dyson Sphere Explained

The Origins of the Dyson Sphere Explained

All of our planet's energy — whether it's gained from food, fossil fuels, or renewable sources — ultimately comes from the sun. Solar radiation makes its way 93 million miles across space to cascade upon the planet's surface. Once here, it's taken up by plants which are then consumed by animals, and the process continues. As noted by LiveScience, this process is called photosynthesis -- and it powers every living thing on Earth.

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Mars’ hidden water store looks like a mirage

Mars’ hidden water store looks like a mirage

Those who dream of possibly terraforming Mars for human habitation have placed a lot of hope on the Red Planet currently containing water, as it would lend validity to the theory that it could continue to retain water (and an atmosphere) under the right conditions. However, a new study from researchers at both the University of Texas and University Grenoble Alpes, published by Geophysical Research Letters in AGU Journals (American Geophysical Union), suggests that what scientists thought was water may not actually be, well, water.

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Is a space elevator possible using today’s technology?

Is a space elevator possible using today’s technology?

One of the biggest challenges to space travel is escaping Earth's orbit. Whether it be traveling to an orbital space station, going to the moon, or setting out for other planets, breaking free of Earth's orbit is the first, and biggest, step.

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The James Webb Space Telescope has arrived at its new home

The James Webb Space Telescope has arrived at its new home

The James Webb Space Telescope has completed its million-mile journey through space and has safely reached its new home orbiting the sun. The next generation observatory, launched on Christmas day last year, successfully performed an orbital insertion maneuver today to enter orbit at the second sun-Earth Lagrange point, or L2.

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Why NASA thinks a hidden ninth planet might be possible

Why NASA thinks a hidden ninth planet might be possible

You've probably heard both astronomers and members of the public arguing about how many planets there are in our solar system. Ever since Pluto was demoted from its planet status in 2006 and downgraded to a "dwarf planet," people have been arguing that it should be reinstated. However, there's another debate about how many planets are in the solar system which is not so well known, about whether there's a mysterious as-yet-unobserved planet out there called Planet Nine.

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