Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Defending Against Missiles

The Pentagon successfully tested an anti-missile defense system yesterday.

The test came after a series of North Korean test missile launches.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

84 Lumber

The company 84 Lumber is running a television commercial about astronauts applying to go to Mars.  Honest.

It suggests how deeply going to Mars has penetrated into popular culture.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Jupiter's Core

NASA's Juno probe has gathered data suggesting Jupiter's core may be much larger than thought.

It may also be more complicated and completely different than Earth's.

Saturday, May 27, 2017


NASA is now reporting that on October 13, 2014, a tiny rock traveling faster than a bullet struck one camera on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.

The incident wasn't reported previously because no harm was done.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Space Aggressora

The U. S. Air Force has created units preparing to fight wars in space.

The projected adversaries are not from the Tau Ceti system, but from Russia and China, both of which are developing offensive space capabilities.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Kennedy's Challenge

President Kennedy told Congress America should put a man on the Moon and return him safely to Earth within a decade 56 years ago.

At that time, America had a grand total of 15 minutes experience in human spaceflight.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017


A new study using mice sperm sent into space and returned to Earth suggests it might be possible for babies to develop normally on orbit.

It's a start.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Astronomers have determined the outermost Earth-sized world in the TRAPPIST1 system is probably too cold to support life.

That may not have always been the case, however.  TRAPPIST-1 was likely much brighter in the past.

Monday, May 22, 2017


KELT-11b  is a very strange world.  It's a gas giant, larger than Jupiter, but with the density of styrofoam.  That density is partly due to an atmosphere that's 1716 miles deep.

It's also a world not long for the universe.  Within a hundred million years, ir will be absorbed by its red giant parent star.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Boyajian's star

Boyajian's star is acting up again, dimming irregularly and inexplicably.

A megastructure orbiting the star still cannot be ruled out.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Titanic Study

A new study says the surface of Saturn's huge moon Titan more closely resembles Mars than Earth.

It also concludes there's been no tectonic activity on Titan for a very long time.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

To The Moon?

The head of a Russian space company says he doubts SpaceX can fly people around the Moon next year.

He says the company's Dragon capsule is inadequate to the task.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017


A NASA probe has detected glints of sunlight bouncing off ice crystals in Earth's atmosphere from millions of miles away.

Similar observations could help characterize the atmosphere of exoplanets.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Migrating Mars

A new study suggests Mars may have formed in the asteroid belt.

The theory is that Mars moved to its current orbit through gravitational interactions with asteroids.

Monday, May 15, 2017

North Korea

North Korea tested another rocket over  the weekend, this one reportedly capable of carrying a nuclear warhead.

Experts estimate North Korea could have the capability of delivering a nuclear bomb to America within 18-24 months.

Saturday, May 13, 2017


Astronauts conducted the 200th spacewalk from ISS yesterday.

It was also the ninth for Peggy Whitson.

Friday, May 12, 2017


HAT-P-26b is a "warm Neptune"  that orbits its star every 4.2 Earth days.  Astronomers have found water vapor in its atmosphere.

It is 430 light years away.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Sptrading Life?

Tiny Brealthrough Starshot probes could carry bacteria-- and human DNA-- to the stars, scientists say.

The first such probes could leave Earth in as little as 20 years.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Getting To Mars

NASA's current plan to go to Mars includes a yearlong mission in lunar orbit to test our the Mars ship.

It also includes international and private industry partners.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Orbiting Pluto

A group of researchers are working on developing a Pluto orbiter mission.

The mission could launch in 2039, the centennial year of Pluto-s discovery.

Monday, May 8, 2017


The USAF's X-37B spaceplane landed successfully yesterday after 718 days in orbit.

The Air Force says the vehicle is used to test new technologies.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Meteor Strike

A new study suggests a meteor strike 2 billion years ago triggered hundreds of thousands of years of volcanic eruptions on Earth.

Those eruptions profoundly affected the evolution of the planet and of life.

Friday, May 5, 2017


Within about 30 light years of the Sun, astronomers have already found several Earth-like exoplanets and dozens of systems that might support life.  That doesn't include the TRAPPIST-1 system, which is 39 light years away.

Astrobiologists will be busy for centuries.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Epsilon Eridani

A new study shows Epsilon Eridani-- a favorite star among science fiction authors writing about interstellar travel-- has a planetary system similar to our own.

Epsilon Eridani is a younger version of the Sun and only 10.5 light years away.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

NASA Budget

NASA's budget for fiscal 2017 will be $19.653 billion.

That's about $600 million above the original request.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017


Apple reportedly has $250 billion in cash.

That would be enough to fund NASA at its current level for ten years and still have $60 billion in cash.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Spy Stuff

SpaceX successfully entered a new market by launching an intelligence satellite for the U. S. Government this morning.

It also successfully soft-landed the booster.