Archive for the ‘space travel’ category: Page 280

Dec 16, 2019

A Former NASA Astronaut Is Building a Plasma-Powered Mars Rocket

Posted by in category: space travel

The astronaut called regular, SpaceX-style rockets “primitive.”

Is this how humanity will finally get to Mars?

Dec 15, 2019

A Hyper-Connected World With 25 Times Faster Travel Will Triple the World Economy

Posted by in categories: economics, education, space travel

Nextbigfuture has looked at the likely future of SpaceX up to 2030 and now recaps the view to 2030 and extends the view to 2050.

The Mars aspect of SpaceX future impact will be less important than how 25X the speed of sound travel transforms our world and has huge economic impacts.

Continue reading “A Hyper-Connected World With 25 Times Faster Travel Will Triple the World Economy” »

Dec 13, 2019

Scientists map Mars’ global wind patterns for the first time

Posted by in categories: climatology, space travel

Today, a paper published in Science documents for the first time the global wind circulation patterns in the upper atmosphere of a planet, 120 to 300 kilometers above the surface. The findings are based on local observations, rather than indirect measurements, unlike many prior measurements taken on Earth’s upper atmosphere. But it didn’t happen on Earth: it happened on Mars. On top of that, all the data came from an instrument and a spacecraft that weren’t originally designed to collect wind measurements.

In 2016, Mehdi Benna and his colleagues proposed to the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) project team that they remotely reprogram the MAVEN spacecraft and its Natural Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer (NGIMS) instrument to do a unique experiment. They wanted to see if parts of the instrument that were normally stationary could “swing back and forth like a windshield wiper fast enough,” to enable the tool to gather a new kind of data.

Initially, the MAVEN project team was reluctant to implement the modifications Benna and his colleagues requested. After all, MAVEN and NGIMS had been orbiting Mars since 2013, and they were working quite well collecting information about the composition of the Mars . Why put all that at risk? Benna and his colleagues argued that this project would collect new kinds of data that could shape our understanding of the upper atmosphere on Mars, inform similar studies on Earth, and help us better understand planetary climate.

Dec 10, 2019

SpaceX’s Just Read the Instructions droneship arrives in Florida following upgrades

Posted by in categories: drones, space travel

SpaceX’s drone ship Just Read the Instructions (JRTI) has arrived in Port Canaveral, Fla. after undergoing refurbishment in Louisiana. The droneship joins Of Course I Still Love You (OCISLY) at the port, bringing SpaceX’s tally of east coast-based droneships to two. The additional droneship will help SpaceX’s execute its busy 2020 manifest.

Dec 10, 2019

SpaceX delivers ‘mighty mice,’ worms, robot to space station

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, space travel

CAPE CANAVERAL, FLA. — SpaceX made an early holiday delivery to the International Space Station on Sunday, bringing muscle-bound “mighty mice,” pest-killing worms and a smart, empathetic robot.

The station commander, Italy’s Luca Parmitano, used a large robot arm to grab onto the Dragon three days after its launch from Cape Canaveral. The two spacecraft soared 260 miles (420 kilometres) above the South Pacific at the time of capture.

“Whenever we welcome a new vehicle on board, we take on board also a little bit of the soul of everybody that contributed to the project, so welcome on board,” Parmitano told Mission Control.

Dec 9, 2019

How 3D-printing robots will get Mars home-ready for our arrival

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, bioengineering, habitats, robotics/AI, space travel

NASA has tentative plans for a manned mission to Mars sometime in the 2030s. Between now and then, there’s still much that needs to be sorted. To start, massive dust storms, high levels of radiation, low temperatures and a lack of water make the Martian surface an unfriendly place for long-term visits. Taming it for human life will likely prove one of the most demanding and complex engineering puzzles in human history. With those extraordinary obstacles in mind, in 2015 NASA announced the 3D-Printed Habitat Challenge: an open call asking designers and architects outside the traditional aerospace industry to create plans for Martian living centred around 3D printing. One of 10 finalists announced in 2019, this plan from the design practices HASSELL and Eckersley O’Callaghan envisions teams of 3D-printing robots building a protective shield on the Martian surface several months in advance of a human landing. Upon arrival, astronauts would then work alongside the autonomous robots to piece together an inflatable, modular habitat.

Video by LightField London.

Dec 7, 2019

How does time dilation affect aging during high-speed space travel?

Posted by in categories: life extension, space travel

Your space questions, answered.

Dec 6, 2019

Gamma-ray laser moves a step closer to reality

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, quantum physics, space travel


A physicist at the University of California, Riverside, has performed calculations showing hollow spherical bubbles filled with a gas of positronium atoms are stable in liquid helium.

The calculations take scientists a step closer to realizing a , which may have applications in , spacecraft propulsion, and .

Continue reading “Gamma-ray laser moves a step closer to reality” »

Dec 6, 2019

Congratulations to the NASA and SpaceX teams on another successful resupply launch!

Posted by in category: space travel

Learn more about what’s on board the Dragon spacecraft headed to the International Space Station:

Dec 2, 2019

Are there multiple universes?

Posted by in categories: cosmology, quantum physics, space travel

What – one vast, ancient and mysterious universe isn’t enough for you? Well, as it happens, there are others. Among physicists, it’s not controversial. Our universe is but one in an unimaginably massive ocean of universes called the multiverse.

If that concept isn’t enough to get your head around, physics describes different kinds of multiverse. The easiest one to comprehend is called the cosmological multiverse. The idea here is that the universe expanded at a mind-boggling speed in the fraction of a second after the big bang. During this period of inflation, there were quantum fluctuations which caused separate bubble universes to pop into existence and themselves start inflating and blowing bubbles. Russian physicist Andrei Linde came up with this concept, which suggests an infinity of universes no longer in any causal connection with one another – so free to develop in different ways.

Cosmic space is big – perhaps infinitely so. Travel far enough and some theories suggest you’d meet your cosmic twin – a copy of you living in a copy of our world, but in a different part of the multiverse. String theory, which is a notoriously theoretical explanation of reality, predicts a frankly meaninglessly large number of universes, maybe 10 to the 500 or more, all with slightly different physical parameters.