NASA has given the green light to develop the Space Launch System (SLS), the most powerful rocket in history and the method by which the US space agency expects to take humans to Mars. Under development for the past three years, the SLS is the first exploration-class vehicle to make it to development stage since the Space Shuttle, with NASA targeting the first test flight by November 2018 at the latest.
Woopsie - looks like you just launched a satellite into the wrong flight path. When you work for the ESA (European Space Agency) and you accidentally launch a satellite into the wrong orbit around the Earth, you report it, and you make a big deal about it. In this case, the team is "examining the implications."
Northrop Grumman has shown off what it believes the military spaceplane of the future should look like, a futuristic and reusable aircraft designed as part of a $3.9m DARPA contract. The Experimental Spaceplane XS-1 would automate a large percentage of flight, as well as kick-start hypersonic aircraft development once more, Northrop Grumman claims, though the company still has competition.
Following the explosion of an asteroid over the Nubian desert a handful of years ago, researchers have been studying bits and pieces that were harvested from that event. With these, a big discovery has been made: an asteroid from long ago contained active volcanoes.
NASA is another step closer to blasting off its experimental "green" spacecraft, which switches traditional (and toxic) propellants with a safer, more efficient alternative that looks like peach tea. The Green Propellant Infusion Mission (GPIM) is expected to launch in 2016 as part of a SpaceX Falcon flight, beginning a year-long experiment into whether greener fuels could revolutionize exploration of the solar system.
Google's Project Tango has arrived at the International Space Station, with the 3D mapping smartphone prototype strapped to SPHERES smart internal satellite robots. The "Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites" are floating ball 'bots intended to navigate their way around the inside of space stations and, eventually, help astronauts with their everyday lives, and NASA hopes the addition of Tango tech will make them even smarter.
Microscopic dust particles that could date back to the very start of our solar system have been extracted from NASA's Stardust spacecraft payload, promising to be the first contemporary samples of interstellar dust. Stardust returned its collection of stellar detritus back in 2006, and thus began a painstaking sift through the particles to see what goodies had been gathered during the three billion mile journey.
Disposable cameras might be a relic of our past, but they’re still useful! Okay, we’re not talking about those plastic ones you used to buy at Walgreens, but this one is still a throwaway camera. Instead of snapping pics of grandma’s birthday party, the Break Up Camera captures pics in space.