Now in Sol 1870, NASA’s Curiosity rover on Mars has wheeled itself into a new position along the Vera Rubin Ridge. Reports Rachel Kronyak, a planetary geologist at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, in looking at recent images from the robot: “I can’t help but think that Curiosity is giving us a ‘high-five’ for […]

      Why should we imagine solar flares taking down the International Space Station? That’s the subject of a Future Tense seminar hosted by New America, Slate, and Arizona State University. So what happens when a catastrophic solar flare paralyzes global space agencies and throws the world order into chaos? This very scenario drives […]

On October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1, the first human-made object to orbit the Earth. Precisely 60 years later, space-faring nations face a much different space environment; one that’s more diverse, disruptive, disordered, and dangerous. Today’s space domain presents a number of asymmetries that differ from other domains, creating a specific deterrence […]

“Back in the saddle again,” reports Michelle Minitti, a planetary geologist at Framework in Silver Spring, Maryland. On Sol 1864, Curiosity successfully got a move on from the robot’s inadvertent layover stop. The result is that the science team has a new workspace, and a new view of the structures exposed in the “Vera Rubin […]

Sky watchers are on the lookout for China’s Tiangong-1 space lab – and the seeing is good. Tiangong-1 (“Heavenly Palace”) was hurled into Earth orbit in late September 2011. It was used for six successive rendezvous and dockings with spacecraft, Shenzhou-8 (uncrewed), Shenzhou-9 (piloted) and Shenzhou-10 (piloted) as part of China’s human space exploration activities. […]

A new report, Commercial Space Mining: Economic and Legal Implications, is a scholarly assessment of commercial space mining activities in the broader context of the emerging space economy. The paper finds that entrepreneurs are increasingly looking at outer space for providing terrestrial solutions, and Western entrepreneurs in particular are working towards setting up basic infrastructure […]

    Transforming the exotic environment of the Red Planet demands talented technologists, scientists, and architects. Enter the Mars City Design group, bridging the gap between leading educators, scientists and engineers, with a splash of artistic vocations within entertainment, media and other professions.       Project exhibition Last month, winners of Mars City Design […]

    NASA’s stalwart Opportunity Mars rover is a busy planetary prowler since it landed in Meridiani Planum back on January 25, 2004. The robot has now chalked up roughly 28 miles (45.04 kilometers) of travel. Opportunity is continuing winter exploration of “Perseverance Valley” on the west rim of the Noachian-aged Endeavour Crater.   Popping […]

    NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is now carrying out Sol 1864 duties. The research plan calls for the robot to return to wheeling about at Vera Rubin Ridge. “Curiosity will finally be back on the move. The rover made an unexpected stop of nearly two weeks in the current location due to several things […]

On November 1, there was a “contentious” nomination hearing for Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK) to be NASA Administrator, split along partisan lines. Bridenstine answered questions for most of the two-and-a-half hour hearing. Democratic Senators questioned his credentials and viewpoints about climate change, sexual harassment and other issues that could affect how he runs the agency […]

Griffith Observatory Event