Saturday, April 29, 2017


Seth Shostak of the SETI Institute told Congress this past week that researchers could survey one million star systems for signs of intelligent life by 2037.

Shostak has previously said he thinks we could find intelligent signals by 2025.

Friday, April 28, 2017


Robert Bigelow told Congress recently that establishing a base on the Moon is the next logical step in human space exploration.

Bigelow Aerospace manufactures inlatable modules that could be used to build such a base.

Thursday, April 27, 2017


NASA is looking at a drone that could cover large areas of Titan in its low gravity and thick atmosphere.  It would land several times along the way.

Dragonfly could launch in the mid-2020s.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Terraforming Mars, Sort Of

Researchers are proposing terreaforming a small area on Mars by directing an asteroid to crash into the planet, creating a lake that would last thousands of years.

They suggest starting the process in 2036.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

New Record

Peggy Whitson  broke the American  record for most days in space yesterday.

She is scheduled to remain in space until September.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Out, Not Up

When people talk about ISS, for example, they generally say it's "up," even though up and down have no particular meaning once we get beyond the atmosphere-- until we reach another world.  We should say ISS is "out" from Earth.

Out also suggests we are on a journey.  We are.

Saturday, April 22, 2017


The rover Opportunity is still exploring Mars after 13 years.

It is about to attempt to reach and enter a valley to investigate whether the valley was cut by flowing water.

Friday, April 21, 2017


Verizon recently reported quarterly earnings of roughly $30 billion.

NASA's annual budget is roughly $19 billion.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Looking For Life

Astronomers have found what may be the best exoplanet yet to search for life-- a super-Earth orbiting within the habitable zone of a red dwarf star only 40 light years away.

Red dwarfs are the most common stars in the universe, so showing they can nurture life would be a game changer.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

2014 JO25

A huge asteroid designated 2014 JO25 will pass within a million miles of Earth today.

If it struck Earth, it would cause major damage.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Lunar Summit

A conference bringing together representatives of space agencies from around the world and people from the private sector is set for October in Hawaii.  The goal will be to develop a plan to build a base on the Moon.

The conference is being called The  Lunar Summit.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Silicon-Based Life

A new set of experiments suggests silicon-based life is, in fact, possible.

That would greatly increase the possibility of life elsewhere in the universe.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

To The Moon

Several government space agencies, including those in China and Russia, support building a base on the Moon before sending humans to Mars.

They also support an international program to build the lunar base.

Friday, April 14, 2017


NASA has announced that chemical reactions that could support life likely take place inside Saturn's moon, Enceladus.  Jupiter's moon Europa is also a strengthening possibility to support life.

It should be noted that both those worlds are well outside the Sun's habitable zone.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Space Shuttle

Twenty years after Gagarin's flight, the Space Shuttle launched on its maiden flight.

It was the first maiden flight of a space vehicle to carry a human crew.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017


Today is the 56th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's flight into space.

It was his only spaceflight.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Metallic Mars

NASA's MAVEN probe has detected metals, such as iron and magnesium, in the atmosphere of Mars.

It's the first time metals have been established as a permanent feature of a planetary atmosphere beyond Earth.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Planetary Defense

A small asteroid passed within a million miles of Earth recently.

An asteroid strike is a natural disaster that could possibly be stopped.  Planetary defense efforts, though, need to be increased.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Blue Moon Cargo

Blue Origin is developing a program called "Blue Moon" that could deliver large cargo shipments to the Moon's surface to support human settlement.

Blue Moon could deliver as much as 10,000 pounds of cargo per flight and would be reusable.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Exoplanet Atmosphere

Astronomers have, for the first time, detected an atmosphere around an exoplanet only slightly larger than Earth.

The atmosphere is thick, suggesting a Venus-like world.  On the other hand, there is some indication that the main atmospheric component is water vapor, which conjures a water world with an atmosphere of steam.

Thursday, April 6, 2017


Jeff Bezos said yesterday he will sell $1 billion worth of Amazon stock annually to support Blue Origin.

BO's first passengered, suborbital flight is currently scheduled for next year.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017


A new study using computer modeling finds TRAPPIST-1e is the only world in that system that may be able to support life.

The other six Earth-sized planets world be either too hot or too cold.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Hunting Planet Nine

Some 60,000 citizen scientists, working through the website, have identified four candidates to be Planet Nine.

Astronomers will now closely study each.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Mars Base Camp

Lockheed Martin is developing a Mars Base Camp concept, a six-person space station in orbit around Mars from which astronauts could remotely explore Mars and support human expeditions to the surface.

The station could be place in 2028.

Saturday, April 1, 2017


Elon Musk says SpaceX may try for a completely reusable Falcon 9.

Already, with only a reusable booster stage, the costs per launch should drop significantly very soon.