It might surprise you, given how deep mankind's exploration into space has been over the years, to learn that when NASA's Voyager spacecraft exited our solar system on Friday, it became the first man-made object ever to do so.
NASA tweeted the news earlier today, touting Voyager's achievement of venturing "into interstellar space."
Launched in 1977, Voyager is now about 12 billion miles from our sun, NASA said. The data it has sent back shows that the spacecraft has been making its way through plasma, or ionized gas, that is found in between stars for … Read more
Most all of us have seen photographs in which Earth looks like a big, blue marble, but what about a tiny, blue one?
That's basically what you'll see in new, stunning images NASA released on Monday.
Taken with cameras from two interplanetary spacecrafts that are located near Saturn and Mercury, the images show what Earth looks like from hundreds of millions of miles away.
One color photograph taken from the Cassini spacecraft on July 19 shows the beige rings of Saturn hovering above a tiny, bluish dot, which is Earth. In this image, Earth is nearly 900 million miles away. … Read more
The tale of the Arkyd telescope is like that of the "little engine that could."
What seemed like a difficult task -- raising $1 million from a Kickstarter campaign to launch the world's first public space telescope -- was overcome on Monday as the crowdfunding goal was met with more than $1.5 million in pledges.
Not only did asteroid mining company Planetary Resources achieve its goal, it surpassed it, which means that the extra money can be used to add even more features to the telescope.
More than 17,600 people backed the Kickstarter campaign -- … Read more
Chances are, most of us will never have the opportunity to walk on the moon, but we might have the opportunity to send a tiny spacecraft in our stead. A Kickstarter project from Pocket Spacecraft wants to launch a moon mission full of personalized space gadgets that would report back to their Earth-bound owners.
Pocket Spacecraft is attempting to raise $440,000 to build out a whole fleet of its tiny spacecraft (called Scouts) and invest in an Interplanetary CubeSat Mothership to transport the little tykes to the lunar surface.… Read more
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This week on Crave, we take a look at Tim-e, an iPhone dock that wakes you up in the most annoying ways possible. We salute Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on making space travel cool again, and demonstrate Petswitch, which lets you put your face on your cat's visage. … Read more
SpaceX and NASA said today that May 19 is the new launch date for the first-ever attempt to send a private company's rocket to the International Space Station.
Intended as a demonstration flight, the mission is designed to give NASA and SpaceX information that will help them plan future missions to the space station. Weather scrapped the previous attempt at the launch, which had been scheduled for May 7.
Unless weather or other factors intervene, SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon spacecraft will launch from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on May 19. On May … Read more
The anniversaries this week of the first man in space and the launch of NASA's first space shuttle missions come at time when commercial spacecraft are ushering in a new era of space flight.
Thursday was the 51st anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's 108-minute orbit around the Earth, an event that shocked the world and ratcheted up the speed of the Cold War-fed space race.
And 31 years ago on April 12, the space shuttle Columbia lifted off, the inaugural flight of NASA's shuttle program which drew to a close last year.
Astronauts from different countries on the … Read more
NASA revealed the first unique views of the far side of the moon today.
The images were captured by a video camera on one of NASA's twin Gravity Recovery And Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) lunar spacecrafts on January 19. In the video (see below), the spacecraft flies towards the lunar south pole exposing the moon's north pole.
"The far side of the moon is extremely rugged," said Maria Zuber, a principal investigator on the project. "The surface also contains many impact craters which are preserved features from asteroids that hit the moons surface after it formed.&… Read more
Zac Manchester is taking this whole private space exploration idea into his own hands. A Cornell graduate student in aerospace engineering, Manchester hopes to raise enough money to launch 100 chip-size satellites into space.
He and some collaborators have created a DIY satellite called Sprite, which Manchester calls the "world's smallest spacecraft." The devices measure the size of a couple of postage stamps, and pack solar cells, a radio transceiver, and a microcontroller onto a single silicon microchip.