Last fall, the Canadian Space Agency asked students to design a simple science experiment that could be performed in space, using items already available aboard the International Space Station. Today, Commander Chris Hadfield
conducted the winner for its designers: two tenth grade students, Kendra Lemke and Meredith Faulkner, in a live feed to their school in Fall River, Nova Scotia. And now, we finally have an answer to the age-old question, What Happens When You Wring Out A Washcloth In Space? [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Apr 18, 2013 -
In 1994, theoretical physicist Miguel Alcubierre proposed a scheme for virtual faster than light travel using a real-world analog to the familiar science fiction trope known as "Warp Drive."
The basic premise exploited certain space-time warping effects predicted by General Relativity to fold space-time
, theoretically allowing a specially designed space craft to reach distant destinations effectively at FTL speeds without actually having to accelerate to light speed or beyond at all. There was, however, at least one major problem with the proposal: The math suggested it would require as much energy as the mass of the planet Jupiter to power the thing. But according to newer calculations based on a modified version of Alcubierre's original proposal
, warp speed travel may now theoretically be within reach
(warning: eyeball-gouging Space.com link), requiring drastically less energy than originally thought. Of course, not everyone's convinced
there's anything to see here. And even so, prohibitive energy input requirements may not be
the only serious challenge
facing the development of real-world warp drive technology, so don't go packing your bags for that long overdue vacation to Risa just yet.
posted by saulgoodman
on Sep 17, 2012 -
Coming soon to a red planet near you, it's the Mars Science Laboratory
Monday, August 6 at 05:31 UTC (other times around the world
Curiosity rover is expected to land on Mars in search of conditions suited to
past or present Martian life. Live coverage begins on NASA TV
at 03:30 UTC.
But this mission has been years in the making, so if you have a little catching up to do... [more inside]
posted by ddbeck
on Aug 4, 2012 -
Sally Ride has died of pancreatic cancer at age 61.
. She was an inspiration to many. I saw her speak years ago when I took my daughters to a women in science program at the University of Michigan and both they and I came away impressed with her intelligence and commitment - the world is a richer place for her having been in it.
posted by leslies
on Jul 23, 2012 -
One of my favorite blogs
happens to be local to me. Eric Berger, the Houston Chronicle's "SciGuy" usually reports on the weather
. But he also posts entertaining and serious stuff as well. [more inside]
posted by PapaLobo
on Nov 22, 2011 -
NASA May Have Discovered Flowing Water on Mars Dark, finger-like features appear and extend down some Martian slopes during late spring through summer, fade in winter, and return during the next spring. Repeated observations have tracked the seasonal changes in these recurring features on several steep slopes in the middle latitudes of Mars' southern hemisphere.
posted by modernnomad
on Aug 4, 2011 -
Introducing the Nautilus-X MMSEV
, a manned deep space craft proposed by a team at NASA's Johnson Space Centre.
posted by Artw
on Feb 14, 2011 -
"I can sense stars, and their whispers amid the roaring of our own Sun." So goes one poetic status of the Voyager 2 twitterfeed
, which appeals to my sense of wonder like nothing else on the internet. Interstellar space probes and microblogging go hand in hand in the 21st Century.
posted by Kattullus
on Dec 21, 2010 -
Built as part of the fifth /dev/fort
developer retreat, Spacelog.org
allows you to explore early space missions via the original NASA transcripts. Currently live are Mercury 6
which made John Glenn the first American in orbit, and the 'successful failure' Apollo 13
(The transcribed key moment
and the original
). Alongside the transcripts are supporting materials from the NASA archives including photography
and descriptions of the mission phases
. The developers are looking for help
to digitise the Gemini 7, Apollo 8 and Apollo 11 missions.
posted by garrett
on Dec 1, 2010 -
On July 17th, NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer
(WISE) satellite completed its first survey of the entire sky viewable from Earth
. After just seven months in orbit, WISE -- a precursor to the planned James Webb Space Telescope
-- has returned more than a million images that provide a close look at celestial objects
ranging from distant galaxies
. The first release of WISE data, covering about 80 percent of the sky, will be delivered to the astronomical community in May of next year
, but in the meantime we can see some of the images and animations that NASA has released to date: Galleries (containing just a small selection of images)
. Videos and Animations: 1
, 2 [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Jul 24, 2010 -
Tonight NASA is scheduled to launch the Kepler Mission
(named after planetary legislator Johannes Kepler
) with the goal of finding Earth size planets in orbit around stars in the Cygnus-Lyra
region of the sky. Over the next 3 and a half years it will maintain a nearly unblinking gaze on the approximately 100 thousand stars in the region. NASA expects it to find about 50 Earth size planets
, as well as hundreds that are larger. You can watch the launch live on NASA TV
. [more inside]
posted by borkencode
on Mar 6, 2009 -
Science & technology funding has an enormous long term impact on the economy, a fact that has not escaped China. Yet, Senators Ben Nelson (D-NE) and Susan Collins (R-ME) have proposed cutting
all National Science Foundation and Department of Energy Office of Science funding from the Senate American Reinvestment and Recovery Act
, along with almost all other proposed funding of the sciences and technological development, as a part of a $77.9B reduction effort. Why? Well, you'll notice that Nebraska & Maine don't contribute much to science & technology in the United States, nor win many grants, and hence no bacon for Nelson and Collins. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges
on Feb 6, 2009 -
"We have water
," said William Boynton of the University of Arizona, lead scientist for the Thermal and Evolved-Gas Analyzer, or TEGA
. "We've seen evidence for this water ice before in observations by the Mars Odyssey orbiter and in disappearing chunks observed by Phoenix last month
, but this is the first time Martian water has been touched and tasted."
posted by finite
on Aug 1, 2008 -
Assemble a rocket from main engine to payload fairing. Rocket Science 101
shows the basic parts of the launch vehicle, how they are configured, and how they work together to launch a NASA spacecraft. More Friday Flash Fun.
posted by netbros
on May 30, 2008 -