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The smartest rubber Gallus domesticus you have ever met!

Camilla the rubber chicken is the child of a chicken and an extra-terrestrial visitor (whose name is being concealed for legal and safety issues)." After a sad childhood in the circus, Camilla joined the Heliophysics team at NASA and befriended Little SDO, the satellite component of the the Solar Dynamics Observatory. In her capacity as SDO mascot and astrochick, Camilla flew into space with Little SDO, flew into a solar radiation storm, continues to monitor space weather, and is training for a trip to the International Space Station alongside astronaut Lt. Commaner Wiseman. Camilla also participates in science outreach and education programs, and she's currently in Australia, preparing to run the solar eclipe marathon! [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Nov 5, 2012 - 8 comments

Dogs in Space

On November 3 1957, Лайка, also known as Laika The Space Dog is launched into orbit around the planet earth. A small mongrel chosen for her patient temper, the Soviet Space Program gloried in her achievement, but when she was sent into space, there was no plan in place for a proper re-entry into the earth’s atmosphere. When pressed for details, the USSR media eventually claimed that she was peacefully euthanized with drugged food after six days in orbit. Documents released years later revealed that after six hours and four orbits, she died from a faulty heat-shield malfunction. Her spacecraft disintegrated five months later... But what if Laika didn’t die? [more inside]
posted by ovvl on Nov 3, 2012 - 73 comments

Pics or we didn't happen

The Last Pictures. In Billions of Years, Aliens Will Find These Photos in a Dead Satellite. Interview with artist Trevor Paglen (previously).
posted by homunculus on Oct 30, 2012 - 33 comments

Rendezvous with Neptune

In case you felt that your week was missing an interview of Carl Sagan by Sidney Poitier during the 1989 Voyager Neptune encounter, you're welcome. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Oct 30, 2012 - 10 comments

Not to be confused with Dyson, the vacuum cleaner company.

Dark matter, or DYSON SPHERES? [more inside]
posted by fnerg on Oct 25, 2012 - 70 comments

The Last Thing You'll Ever Desire

Derek Smart has been making games for over 20 years. He sold his first games in plastic baggies at hobby stores. Yet his longevity is somewhat of an anachronism. Many gamers today don't even know who is is, in spite of the fact that his games have sold well enough to keep his company in business since 1992. And the games themselves, well they're mostly terrible. Especially his first, Battlecruiser 3000AD. The Verge takes an in-depth look at the hotheaded perfectionist millionaire game developer whose impenetrable, terminally overhyped games sparked one of the most legendary flamewars in internet history.
posted by Rhaomi on Oct 23, 2012 - 35 comments

I lost my heart to a ...

Sarah Brightman, multi-million selling singer, actress and songwriter, has taken her medical and will soon start training to become the 7th or 8th 'Space Tourist', visiting the ISS in 2015. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Oct 10, 2012 - 51 comments

Launching and catching Dragons

SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft docked with the International Space Station (ISS) on Wednesday morning, after a slightly problematic launch on Sunday. Following on the successful test flight in May, this mission marks the first official supply run to the ISS by a private company. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Oct 10, 2012 - 98 comments

Songs in the key of H

Iain M. Banks, Alastair Reynolds, and Peter F. Hamilton discuss their books with fans (video). The Hydrogen Sonata, the 10th of Bank's Culture books, will be released October 12th, read the first chapter here. Meanwhile it's 20 years since Reynolds first started work on Revelation Space.
posted by Artw on Oct 7, 2012 - 94 comments

Ladies and gentleman, Voyager I has just left the building..

All evidence is pointing to the fact that Voyager I has left our solar system. New data from the spacecraft, which I will discuss below, indicate Voyager 1 may have exited the solar system for good. If true, this would mark a truly historic moment for the human race — sending a spacecraft beyond the edge of our home solar system
posted by KevinSkomsvold on Oct 7, 2012 - 89 comments

How To Steal The Space Shuttle: A Step-By-Step Guide

How To Steal The Space Shuttle: A Step-By-Step Guide
posted by Egg Shen on Oct 5, 2012 - 33 comments

.... .. -.. . -. .. .-- .- -.- .- (HI DE NIWAKA)

.... .. -.. . -. .. .-- .- -.- .- (HI DE NIWAKA) If you see something flashing in the sky and it flashes with that morse sequence, it's not an UFO. It's the small (10cm cube) cubesat FITSAT-1 greeting us from the space with powerful LED morse flashes.
posted by elpapacito on Oct 5, 2012 - 11 comments

A New Kinda Satellite State

The satellite man is typically young, with an entrepreneur’s zeal and a sense of adventure, often from the mercantile district of South Tehran, trained by colleagues in the black-market niche of satellite TV installation...
posted by Chipmazing on Sep 30, 2012 - 11 comments

Atomic Rockets

Atomic Rockets is chock full of stuff to tickle the imagination of anyone who has enjoyed science fiction accounts of space travel. You can move your cursor over the "Show topic list" button in the top right corner of the page and start exploring.
posted by Egg Shen on Sep 29, 2012 - 8 comments

5, 4, 3, 2, 1...Oh wait, there's another space idea.

How did space travel turned into an office park when it was sold as being a unique adventure?
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Sep 25, 2012 - 49 comments

"This is the best time. The next 2 or 3 thousand years will be fantastic!"

In 2005, the Discovery Channel aired Alien Worlds, a fictional documentary based on Wayne Douglas Barlowe's graphic novel, Expedition: Being an Account in Words and Artwork of the 2358 A.D. Voyage to Darwin IV." Depicting mankind's first robotic mission to an extrasolar planet that could support life, the show drew from NASA's Origins Program, the NASA/JPL PlanetQuest Mission, and ESA's Darwin Project. It was primarily presented through CGI, but included interviews from a variety of NASA scientists and other experts, including Stephen Hawking, Michio Kaku, John Craig Venter and Jack Horner. Oh, and George Lucas, too. Official site. Previously on MeFi. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Sep 21, 2012 - 12 comments

Stanley in Space

Dad sends his son's favourite train, Stanley, into space
posted by jontyjago on Sep 21, 2012 - 44 comments

Our home food dispenser broke and I had to wait 20 seconds at the check out counter, such inefficiency.

50 years of The Jestons and Why the show still matters. It was September 23, 1962 when ABC aired the first episode of The Jetsons. This was ABC's first color program and while it only lasted a single season, its impact, influence, and popularity is still felt today. Many of the predictions portrayed in the series are coming true.
posted by 2manyusernames on Sep 21, 2012 - 60 comments

To infinity & beyond

Photos of the Flight Deck (cockpit) of the Space Shuttle Endeavour, fully powered for one of the final times, by young former NASA photographer Ben Cooper
posted by growabrain on Sep 21, 2012 - 55 comments

Snicker-snack

Boojum, a spacefaring Cthulhu Mythos story run through the filter of Lewis Carroll by Sarah Monette and Elizabeth Bear (Interview). A sequel in the same universe, Mongoose, Appeared in the Ellen Datlow edited anthology Lovecraft Unbound. An audio of Mongoose is available at the Drabblecast (part 1, part 2), as well as a further sequel, The Wreck of the Charles Dexter Ward (part 1, part 2)
posted by Artw on Sep 21, 2012 - 31 comments

The Rockwell International Integrated Space Plan

Over at Make Blog, Sean Ragan has after years of search dug up a copy of the Rockwell International Integrated Space Plan from 1989. It's now scanned and downloadable for your enjoyment.
posted by Harald74 on Sep 14, 2012 - 41 comments

Nothin' but a post about space stuff

Meanwhile, around the solar system...
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Sep 12, 2012 - 14 comments

9/11 from space

"It's horrible to see smoke pouring from wounds in your own country from such a fantastic vantage point." Astronaut Frank Culbertson's reflections as he orbited the Earth on Sept. 11th, 2001.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Sep 11, 2012 - 76 comments

A talk by writer Warren Ellis

How to See the Future.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Sep 9, 2012 - 36 comments

How to build a Dyson sphere in five (relatively) easy steps

How to build a Dyson sphere in five (relatively) easy steps.
posted by Egg Shen on Sep 7, 2012 - 80 comments

Knots in Spaaaaace

The fine people over at the International Guild of Knot Tyers Forum talk knots. On Mars.
posted by Foci for Analysis on Sep 4, 2012 - 33 comments

An Empire of Stars

A cold autumn day was dawning as the German soldiers of the Altenwalde Versuchskommando prepared their V2 rocket for launch. They'd done this a hundred times before, but when the V2 finally roared up into the sky over the North Sea, the men of the AVKO couldn't help but smile and cheer. Soon the rest of the soldiers and officers around the launchpad were cheering as well. British officers and soldiers. Because this was Operation Backfire, the beginning of something that most people don't even know existed - the British Space Programme. [more inside]
posted by garius on Aug 30, 2012 - 42 comments

Flipping cat physics

The physics of how cats flip their bodies to land feet first also allows spacecraft to turn. Flipping cats [previously] is interesting. It's even more interesting if your dad works at NASA and you have access to people who use flipping-cat physics to make spacecraft turn in space.
posted by milkb0at on Aug 26, 2012 - 28 comments

We come in peace for all mankind.

Google brings its Street View cameras into the NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida. This is their largest special Street View collection to date: 6000 panoramic images, including the Apollo 14 module, the Vehicle Assembly Building, Launch Firing Room #4 and Space Shuttle Orbiters Atlantis and Endeavour. Intro Video. (Via) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Aug 25, 2012 - 11 comments

Байконур

"... with the break-up of the Soviet Union, Baikonour, now part of Kazakhstan, had to be leased by Russia from the Kazakh government, and suddenly looks less and less like a long term solution to the future of space exploration."
posted by barnacles on Aug 23, 2012 - 7 comments

Curiosity's descent is our ascent

Take the ride down to the surface of Mars in full 1080p glory. [YouTube]
posted by Burhanistan on Aug 22, 2012 - 98 comments

The journey from Sputnik to Mir (and all the dead ends in between)

Red Star in Orbit is a three-part BBC documentary about the history of the Soviet space program, originally broadcast in 1990 as part of the ongoing series Horizon. Based on a book by American space historian and NASA vetran James Oberg, who features prominently in the program, Red Star in Orbit was filmed and assembled while the slow collapse of the USSR was already underway. The filmmakers were given an unprecedented amount of access to active Cosmonauts, veterans of the program and to Star City itself. [more inside]
posted by Narrative Priorities on Aug 20, 2012 - 41 comments

What the fuck has NASA done to make your life awesome?

What the fuck has NASA done to make your life awesome?
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Aug 14, 2012 - 71 comments

My God, it's full of galaxies

A flight through the universe using data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. [single-link APOD]
posted by fantabulous timewaster on Aug 14, 2012 - 22 comments

"Because I'm in space, and I can, I get to name these yo-yo tricks."

NASA Astronaut Don Pettit uses his off-duty time to practice his microgravity yo-yo skills.
posted by OverlappingElvis on Aug 11, 2012 - 39 comments

Curiouser and curiouser

NASA commentary on Curiosity landing has just started, landing itself is expected two hours later, at 5:31 am UTC/10:31 pm PDT. [more inside]
posted by egor83 on Aug 5, 2012 - 1193 comments

Oh man look at those cavemen go

Coming soon to a red planet near you, it's the Mars Science Laboratory! On Monday, August 6 at 05:31 UTC (other times around the world), NASA's 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 - 139 comments

How Big is the Universe?

How Big is the Universe? Measured with a protractor. Lots of Pictures!!!
posted by Yellow on Jul 24, 2012 - 34 comments

Astronauts and religion

Communion on the Moon: The Religious Experience in Space.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jul 22, 2012 - 35 comments

Dancing with the Stars

Views from the ISS at Night (Vimeo) - Knate Myers assembled this video from a series of time-lapse videos taken aboard the ISS. Plus, one of my favorite movie soundtracks! Naturally, go full-screen HD for best experience. [more inside]
posted by insert.witticism.here on Jul 21, 2012 - 28 comments

5999.997

Robbie is a short film assembled from NASA archive footage.
posted by anigbrowl on Jul 11, 2012 - 9 comments

Et un vin beaucoup pour l'humanité

Un Petit plat pour l’Homme (A Small Dish For Man) is a cute animated short by Corentin Charron which looks at dining in space. [via]
posted by quin on Jul 10, 2012 - 5 comments

Happy ID4 day!

"Welcome to Earth!"
posted by Artw on Jul 4, 2012 - 79 comments

Sic transit gloria

Up-close with Atlantis. A photo gallery of Space Shuttle Atlantis, as it awaits decommissioning in the VAB.
posted by bitmage on Jul 3, 2012 - 10 comments

Is It Moist On Mars?

New report suggests Mars may be full of liquid water - Smithsonianmag.com
posted by The Whelk on Jun 26, 2012 - 77 comments

Fetch, NASA, Fetch!

Veteran astronaut Tom Jones thinks NASA should nab an asteroid.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jun 21, 2012 - 27 comments

This post is just in time for the annual spaghetti harvest.

In the late 1970s the UK's Anglia Television ran a respected weekly documentary series: Science Report. But when the show was cancelled in 1977, the producers decided to channel Orson Welles in their final episode. The result was Alternative 3. Over the course of the hour, the audience would learn that a Science Report investigation into the UK "brain drain" had uncovered shocking revelations: man-made pollution had resulted in catastrophic climate change, the Earth would soon be rendered uninhabitable, and a secret American / Soviet joint plan was in place to establish colonies on the Moon and Mars. The show ended with footage of a US/Soviet Mars landing from May 22, 1962. After Alternative 3 aired, thousands of panicked viewers phoned the production company and demanded to know how long they had left to change planets. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 20, 2012 - 22 comments

New Moon

Kelly Beatty of Sky & Telescope magazine has introduced the first entirely new Moon globe in 40 years using high-resolution data from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC). You may know LROC as the satellite that showed us the remains of the Apollo missions (previously). One nice detail is that they got the Moon's asphalt-like color correct.
posted by dirigibleman on Jun 16, 2012 - 16 comments

Secret Space Plane caught on video

The U.S. Air Force's robotic X-37B space plane came back to Earth today (June 16) after 15 months in orbit on a mystery mission. [more inside]
posted by Bonzai on Jun 16, 2012 - 38 comments

China takes another step into space

China has announced it will launch Shenzhou-9 on Saturday morning at 6:37am EDT. The space mission will feature the country's first manned docking with Tiangong 1, a mini space station; the first Chinese woman to go into space, Liu Yang, and Jing Haipeng, the first taikonaut to venture into space twice.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jun 15, 2012 - 36 comments

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