Lights…camera…action! That’s the upcoming scene onboard the International Space Station as Roscosmos commander Anton Shkaplerov, actress Yulia Peresild and movie director Klim Shipenko are ready for liftoff on October 5. A Soyuz-2.1booster with the Soyuz MS-19 crewed spacecraft and ISS-66 expedition crew is scheduled to takeoff from Launchpad 31 of the Baikonur Cosmodrome. The trio […]

  NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover at Gale Crater is now performing Sol 3248 duties. A Sol 3247 drive of the robot went as planned, crushing and breaking nodules as part of its duties, reports Ken Herkenhoff, a planetary geologist at the USGS Astrogeology Science Center in Flagstaff, Arizona. Fresh surfaces “The fresh surfaces exposed by […]

  Earth’s Moon is being eyed as an on-location locale for operating unique and novel observatories. The just-concluded NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) symposium was the setting for reviewing several NIAC-backed studies. Robot deployed wire mesh One concept outlined at NIAC is the Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT) on the Far-Side of the Moon, explained […]

It is dubbed FLOAT, short for Flexible Levitation on a Track. This concept is geared to build the first railway system on the Moon, one that provides reliable, autonomous, and around-the-clock payload transport across the lunar landscape. Magnet robots What’s envisioned is use of scads of unpowered, individually-controllable, meter-scale levitating magnet robots over a flexible […]

  NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover at Gale Crater is now performing Sol 3246 duties. Reports Mark Salvatore, a planetary geologist at the University of Michigan, a recently scripted two-sol (3246-3247) plan will wrap up the robot’s drilling activities at the Maria Gordon drill location before it continues the drive up-section and towards the southwest. “On […]

  NASA’s Future in Low Earth Orbit: Considerations for ISS Extension & Transition, a House Space & Aeronautics Subcommittee Hearing, was held Tuesday, September 21, 2021. “Now, after more than 20 years of continuous operations, the ISS is beginning to show its age,” said Subcommittee Ranking Member Brian Babin in an opening statement. Cracks and […]

A super-powerful camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has captured new imagery of slope streaks on the Red Planet. The sharp-shooting High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) snagged a set of new dark streaks. Slope streaks are common in the tropics of Mars. Once thought to be caused by flowing water, most scientists now believe […]

As humankind stretches out beyond Earth, a critical requirement for outposts and settlements on the Moon and Mars is the use of on-the-spot resources to create pressurized, human-rated habitats. Those distant domiciles need to be low mass (high tensile strength), must be highly reliable (high toughness) and can be easily fabricated. The cost of hauling […]

  NASA’s Volatiles Investigating Polar Exploration Rover (VIPER) is headed for the near western edge of Nobile crater. That site was selected in a review of 15 locales, then down to four spots, with the Nobile site a final pick. VIPER is a resource-mapping mission and while on the Moon, VIPER will get a close-up […]

Another step toward China’s space station program has been successfully accomplished. The country’s Tianzhou-3 cargo spacecraft was launched on Monday, delivering supplies to the construction site of the Tiangong orbital outpost. The craft docked with the country’s space station’s core module Tianhe at 10:08 pm on Monday, 6.5 hours after its launch, according to the […]