Space

NASA rules out astronauts on first flight of super-massive rocket

NASA rules out astronauts on first flight of super-massive rocket

Putting a crew on board the first flight of the Orion capsule atop the super-massive Space Launch System (SLS) rocket would not be feasible because of immense safety costs, a NASA working group has concluded.

The first flight of the super-massive rocket, which is being seen as the first step in the United States’ return to human space exploration, has been scheduled to take place sometime in 2019.

NASA usually tests new rockets first without a crew, given numerous safety risks associated with such space vehicles.

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NASA’s new Mars plan includes yearlong mission to the Moon

NASA’s new Mars plan includes yearlong mission to the Moon

NASA has revealed a new plan in which a group of astronauts may spend around a year in orbit around the Moon in the late 2020s as part of its broader plan to send humans to Mars a decade later.

Greg Williams, deputy associate administrator for policy & plans in NASA’s Human Exploration & Operations Mission Directorate, revealed the plan at the Humans to Mars Summit in Washington D.C.

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NASA releases video starring spacewalking astronauts

NASA releases video starring spacewalking astronauts

U.S. space agency NASA has released a stunning ‘action cam’ video of a spacewalk on the International Space Station (ISS), showing what exactly takes place after an astronaut steps out of the orbiting lab.

The renowned space agency shared the footage, which was captured by Pesquet on 24th of March, by posting it on Google’s video-sharing service YouTube.

The footage essentially shows two astronauts conducting a spacewalk outside of the orbiting lab. It also presents a breath-taking view of our planet from an altitude of 250 miles.

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SpaceX to start testing high-speed satellite broadband later this year

SpaceX to start testing high-speed satellite broadband later this year

SpaceX has confirmed that it is working on a plan to establish a global broadband internet constellation and start on-orbit tests for that as soon as later this year.

Nearly a couple of years ago, SpaceX Chief Executive Elon Musk had revealed the company’s intention to create an internet constellation, consisting of thousands of satellites in low-Earth orbit (LEO) to provide customers with 1 Gbps broadband.

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French Astronaut Thomas Pesquet Votes in Presidential Elections from International Space Station

French Astronaut Thomas Pesquet

ESA Astronaut Thomas Pesquet from France voted for the second round of French Presidential elections from the International Space Station. Being at ISS didn’t stop Pesquet from voting for his favorite candidate in the Presidential elections. This year, the voter turnout remained low for presidential elections compared to 2007 and 2012. French voters had to choose between Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen during the second round of presidential elections. The results for elections will be announced shortly.

Cassini discovers vast void between Saturn’s rings

Cassini discovers vast void between Saturn’s rings

NASA’s spacecraft Cassini has discovered a vast void between the rings of Saturn, American space agency researchers confirmed in a newly released statement.

Jim Green, the director of the Planetary Science Division at Washington-based NASA Headquarters, said that images captured by Cassini revealed that the area in between Saturn’s iconic rings is devoid of even space dust.

As the spacecraft dove through the gap, it came within 1,900 miles of the gaseous planet’s cloud tops and within 200 miles of the rings’ innermost visible edge.

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California proposes plan to tax rocket launches by miles

California proposes plan to tax rocket launches by miles

As the technology sector is increasingly investing bigger amounts of money into the aerospace start-ups, California has proposed a noteworthy plan to tax space rocket launches from its coast. Many private companies are working on technology to reduce cost of space missions and make them commercially viable for many organizations planning to launch satellites.

As per the proposed plan, the Golden State’s tax payments will be determined by how rockets fly the 62 miles or 100 kilometers from a launch pad at the state’s coast to the edge of space to transport tourists or goods.

Nearby Star System is a good model for our early Solar System: Astronomers

Nearby Star System is a good model for our early Solar System: Astronomers

A nearby star system, dubbed Epsilon Eridani, is a good model for early solar system and it could provide scientists with clues to the dynamics of the early-phase of our own solar system.

The Epsilon Eridani, which is also called Ran, is located in the southern constellation of Eridanus, nearly ten light-years from Earth. Scientists have estimated that Ran is similar to our Sun, but its age is one-fifth our host star’s age.

SpaceX announces future plan to launch thousands of small broadband satellites

SpaceX announces future plan to launch thousands of small broadband satellites

Elon Musk-led SpaceX on Wednesday announced its plans to launch thousands of small satellites starting in 2019 to establish a global broadband internet constellation.

Patricia Cooper, vice president of satellite government affairs at SpaceX, told the U.S. Senate’s Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation that the private-sector firm wanted to launch 4,425 small satellites to low Earth orbit starting in 2019.

The satellites, all of which would be launched in phases on Falcon 9 rockets, will be fully deployed by 2024.

Cassini re-establishes contact after ‘dive’ between Saturn and its rings

Cassini re-establishes contact after ‘dive’ between Saturn and its rings

U.S. space agency NASA’s Cassini spacecraft re-established contact with project managers on Earth after ‘diving’ between Saturn and its rings.

Cassini was out of contact as scientists oriented its dish antenna to use it as a shield to protect the spacecraft from potential damage from ring particles. As scientists had remotely oriented the antenna away from Earth, the spacecraft remained out of contact for nearly 22 hours.

It re-established contact shortly before 3 a.m. ET after crossing through the gap between the gaseous planet and its rings.

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