Science

Boeing submits Human Lander System for NASA’s Artemis moon missions

Boeing submits Human Lander System for NASA’s Artemis moon missions

Today in Houston, Texas, Boeing announced that they'd officially submitted a proposal to NASA as part of the Artemis space program. The Boeing submission today was for an integrated Human Lander System (HLS) that'll bring astronauts to our Earth's moon, then back up again to lunar orbit. Boeing's proposal emphasized a "Fewest Steps to the Moon" approach with NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) Block 1B.

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NASA’s TESS shows off a gorgeous panorama of the southern sky

NASA’s TESS shows off a gorgeous panorama of the southern sky

NASA has unveiled a large and awe-inspiring panoramic photo that was taken by the TESS spacecraft. The panoramic image was constructed using 208 images that TESS has taken during the first year of science operations that completed on July 18. NASA says that the image shows both the beauty of the cosmos and the reach of the TESS cameras.

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Harvard researchers RoboBee is powered by soft artificial muscles

Harvard researchers RoboBee is powered by soft artificial muscles

In the past small robots like the RoboBee developed at Harvard were packed with hard parts that were fragile and could be destroyed in an impact with a wall or other robot. The scientists behind RoboBee have developed a new and resilient version of the robot that is powered by soft artificial muscles that can crash into things without being damaged.

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NASA’s TESS mission shares massive circular mosaic of the southern sky

NASA’s TESS mission shares massive circular mosaic of the southern sky

NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) has produced a giant new image of the southern sky, something constructed from more than 200 images captured during the mission's first year. According to the space agency, the panorama includes 29 of the exoplanets that were discovered by TESS, as well as more than 1,000 candidate planets that may join those 29.

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Cannibal wood ant colony survives years sealed in nuke bunker, plus a happy ending

Cannibal wood ant colony survives years sealed in nuke bunker, plus a happy ending

A new study expanded on a seemingly impossible scenario in which wood ants survived while trapped for years in an abandoned nuclear weapons bunker in Poland. The wooded area around the former Soviet nuclear base at Templewo, Poland contained (and still contains) large colonies of the wood ant (Formica polyctena Först). In the year 2012, volunteer researchers entered the bunker (one of two, actually), to ascertain information about bats that'd found their way in to hibernate. In 2012 they found bats, but they also found a massive amount of ants - and so they started gathering data on the ants as well as the bats.

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MIT algorithm for robots that helps them find the door

MIT algorithm for robots that helps them find the door

In the future, autonomous cars will not only take people to and from destinations, but they will also deliver goods without the need for drivers to operate the vehicles. The catch is that no driver means there will be no one to take the packages to the door. Many see robots as the answer to that dilemma.

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Voyager 2 offered new insights on the transition to interstellar space

Voyager 2 offered new insights on the transition to interstellar space

NASA scientists have published papers that use data that Voyager 2 gathered a year ago when it made the crossing into interstellar space. On November 5, 2018, Voyager 2 became the second spacecraft in history to leave the heliosphere, which is the protective bubble produced by the sun.

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Astronauts on the ISS can bake cookies in space for the first time

Astronauts on the ISS can bake cookies in space for the first time

NASA says the Cygnus cargo spacecraft launched over the weekend has successfully docked with the International Space Station. Amid the cargo contained on this vessel is a special oven and cookie dough that brings a special new capability to the ISS: the ability to bake chocolate chip cookies. The experiment comes from DoubleTree by Hilton and Zero G Kitchen.

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New NASA Curiosity photos give a stunningly atmospheric view of Mars

New NASA Curiosity photos give a stunningly atmospheric view of Mars

NASA's Curiosity rover may not be on Mars primarily to act as a roving photographer, but that hasn't stopped it from sending back some seriously atmospheric shots of the red planet. The latest batch of images from Curiosity arrived over the weekend, and they show a haunting vista of the Martian terrain the rover plans to explore.

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MIT researchers invent double-sided surgical tape inspired by spiders

MIT researchers invent double-sided surgical tape inspired by spiders

Scientists at MIT have devised a new type of surgical tape that is inspired by a sticky substance that spiders use to catch their prey. The tape that the engineers have developed is double-sided and is designed to seal tissues together rapidly. The tape has been tested in rat and pig tissue, and the researchers have shown that their new tape can tightly bind tissues such as lung and the intestines in only five seconds.

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SpaceX has completed 13 successful Mark 3 parachute tests in a row

SpaceX has completed 13 successful Mark 3 parachute tests in a row

SpaceX has announced that it has now completed 13 successful tests of the Mark 3 parachute system. To get its certification reportedly required ten successful tests in a row for the system. The 13th test was different than other tests that have been run. In this test, one of the four parachutes was purposefully not deployed.

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NASA and Boeing’s Starliner Pad Abort Test will be livestreamed on Monday

NASA and Boeing’s Starliner Pad Abort Test will be livestreamed on Monday

On Monday, NASA and Boeing plan to conduct the Pad Abort Test with the CST-100 Starliner, the spacecraft that will eventually carry humans into space. The vessel is being constructed under NASA's Commercial Crew program; this test is designed to make sure that Startliner's systems will function properly both together and separately.

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