Archive for the ‘space travel’ category: Page 358

Aug 9, 2018

Here’s what SpaceX must do to win the commercial crew race

Posted by in category: space travel

Demo test, abort test, finish COPVs, test fuel loading, and so on. It’s a long list.

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Aug 9, 2018

NASA picks 13 companies to envision the future of orbital human spaceflight

Posted by in categories: futurism, space travel

Thirteen companies, including Boeing and Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin space venture, will be doing studies for NASA on the future of commercial human spaceflight in low Earth orbit.

All of the studies are due in December, and are supposed to cost no more than $1 million each. NASA still has to negotiate the contract amounts with the study groups, but it expects the total cost of the effort to come in at around $11 million.

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Aug 8, 2018

Astronaut Announcement

Posted by in category: space travel

Don’t Miss This! We’re introducing you to the first astronauts who will launch from U.S. soil since the final Shuttle mission in 2011. Join us live starting at 11 a.m. EDT on Friday, Aug. 3 to meet the Commercial Crew astronauts who will fly on The Boeing Company and SpaceX capsules to #LaunchAmerica to the International Space Station.

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Aug 7, 2018

Jupiter’s moons create invisible ‘killer’ waves that could destroy spacecraft

Posted by in categories: particle physics, robotics/AI, space travel

Here on Earth, electromagnetic waves around the planet are typically pretty calm. When the Sun fires a burst of charged particles at the Earth we are treated to an aurora (often called Northern Lights), but rarely are they a cause for concern. If you were to head to Jupiter, however, things would change dramatically.

In a new study published in Nature Communications, researchers describe the incredible electromagnetic field structure around two of Jupiter’s moons: Europa and Ganymede. The invisible magnetic fields around these bodies is being powered by Jupiter’s own magnetic field, and the result is an ultra-powerful particle accelerator of sorts, which might be capable of seriously damaging or even destroying a spacecraft.

“Chorus waves” are low-frequency electromagnetic waves that occur naturally around planets, including Earth. Near our planet they’re mostly harmless, but they do have the capability to produce extremely fast-moving “killer” particles that could cause damage to manmade technology if we happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

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Aug 7, 2018

SpaceX organizes inaugural conference to plan landings on Mars

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, government, space travel

No one can deny that SpaceX founder Elon Musk has thought a lot about how to transport humans safely to Mars with his Big Falcon Rocket. But when it comes to Musk’s highly ambitious plans to settle Mars in the coming decades, some critics say Musk hasn’t paid enough attention to what people will do once they get there.

However, SpaceX may be getting more serious about preparing for human landings on Mars, both in terms of how to keep people alive as well as to provide them with something meaningful to do. According to private invitations seen by Ars, the company will host a “Mars Workshop” on Tuesday and Wednesday this week at the University of Colorado Boulder. Although the company would not comment directly, a SpaceX official confirmed the event and said the company regularly meets with a variety of experts concerning its missions to Mars.

This appears to be the first meeting of such magnitude, however, with nearly 60 key scientists and engineers from industry, academia, and government attending the workshop, including a handful of leaders from NASA’s Mars exploration program. The invitation for the inaugural Mars meeting encourages participants to contribute to “active discussions regarding what will be needed to make such missions happen.” Attendees are being asked to not publicize the workshop or their attendance.

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Aug 5, 2018

Sorry Elon Musk, But It’s Now Clear That Colonizing Mars Is Unlikely — And A Bad Idea

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, engineering, environmental, government, space travel, sustainability

This article was originally published at The Conversation. The publication contributed the article to Space.com’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

Space X and Tesla founder Elon Musk has a vision for colonising Mars, based on a big rocket, nuclear explosions and an infrastructure to transport millions of people there. This was seen as highly ambitious but technically challenging in several ways. Planetary protection rules and the difficulties of terraforming (making the planet hospitable by, for example, warming it up) and dealing with the harsh radiation were quoted as severe obstacles.

Undeterred, Musk took a first step towards his aim in February this year with the launch of a Tesla roadster car into an orbit travelling beyond Mars on the first Falcon Heavy rocket. This dramatically illustrated the increasing launch capability for future missions made available by partnerships between commercial and government agencies.

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Aug 5, 2018

Scientists Discover a Giant Rogue Planet Bumbling Around Space

Posted by in category: space travel

What a dumb planet.

Not all who wander are lost, but that might be the case for a newly discovered rogue planet. Scientists have found evidence of a giant planetary mass outside our solar system that appears to be traveling without any sort of set orbit or parent star.

This bumbling fool of a planet was first discovered by astronomers using the National Science Foundation’s Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA). From the radio astronomy observatory, scientists were able to pick up its magnetic activity and study it, the findings of which were made public on Thursday. It’s the first time the observatory’s radio-telescope detection was able to pick up a planetary-mass object beyond our solar system.

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Aug 4, 2018

Astronomers Finally Understand 170-Year-Old Stellar Eruption

Posted by in categories: materials, space travel

Data collected from the Gemini South telescope in Chile has shed light on a nearly-200-year-old stellar eruption.

Gemini spectroscopy shows that ejected material from the blast was the fastest ever seen from a star that remained intact.

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Aug 4, 2018

Britain looks to bring commercial rocket launches to home soil

Posted by in categories: government, habitats, space travel

The British government is preparing to launch its first commercial rocket from the country by 2021, and has upped its funding and partnerships with American companies to do so, reports CNBC.

The details: Lockheed Martin has already been allotted the largest chunk of UKSA’s (United Kingdom Space Agency) funding, receiving over $30 million “to develop an orbital launch site for small rockets in Melness, Scotland.” The company told CNBC, “[t]he launcher will be a flight-proven, dedicated small sat vehicle.” Richard Branson’s Virgin Orbit also locked in a deal with UKSA “to launch its LauncherOne rocket from Cosmic Girl,” and plans to be the first to launch a commercial rocket from the island in the next three years.

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Aug 4, 2018

NASA Introduces Nine Astronauts for First Commercial Flights

Posted by in category: space travel

The “Commercial Crew Nine” will fly to space in hardware made by Boeing and SpaceX

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