Friday, October 9, 2015

Reaching Mars

NASA plans to put astronauts on Mars in the 2030s by testing technologies and techniques in cislunar space in the 2020s.

The testing will include an asteroid rendezvous mission.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Double Base

In the early phase of settling the Moon, pairing a public, government-run base with a private, commercial base nearby might make sense.

Such an approach would increase safety for astronauts, allow joint projects, and expand the human economy into space in a major way.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Aldrin On Mars

Buzz Aldrin, who is 85 now, is teaming with the Florida Institute of Technology to develop a plan to put humans on Mars by 2040.  His strategy involves first establishing a base on one of Mars' two tiny moons.

Aldrin was also instrumental in developing the docking in space approach used by Apollo to reach the Moon.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Ballooning To Space

World View, an Arizona-based company, is planning to offer tourists flights to 100,000 meters altitude in a gondola under a huge helium balloon starting in 2017.

Passengers will spend about two hours at altitude, where they can see the blackness of space and the curvature of Earth.  The pressurized gondola is classified by the FAA as a spacecraft.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Big Pay Day

THE MARTIAN took in an estimated $55 million at the box office this past weekend, making it the second biggest October opening ever.

The all-time champ is still another space themed movie, GRAVITY.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Private Moon Landing

Moon Express, a California-based company dedicated to opening the Moon to private activity, is planning the first private lunar landing for 2017.

If all goes well with the first mission, the next mission could possibly be a sample return.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Oxygen As Biomarker

Scientists have considered free oxygen in the atmosphere of a planet to be a sign of life.  New research, however, establishes oxygen could be maintained nonbiologically.

So, to use oxygen as a bionarker, it must be in the right context.