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Trump's NASA Pivot

October 11, 2017 Rumors that the Trump administration was more interested in the moon than Mars began circulating days after the inauguration. Leaked memos published in February revealed the president’s advisers wanted NASA to send astronauts there by 2020, one part in a bigger plan to focus on activities near Earth rather than...

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Trump's NASA Pivot

October 10, 2017 Rumors that the Trump administration was more interested in the moon than Mars began circulating days after the inauguration. Leaked memos published in February revealed the president’s advisers wanted NASA to send astronauts there by 2020, one part in a bigger plan to focus on activities near Earth rather than...

How Sputnik Launched an Era of Technological Fragility

October 6, 2017 On October 4, 1957, a beach ball-shaped satellite launched into space from the Kazakh desert. The satellite joined Earth’s journey around the sun, which is why its creators named it Sputnik, Russian for “traveling companion.” Sputnik circled the planet about every hour-and-a-half, traveling at 18,000 miles per hour as it...

What Would Flying From New York to Shanghai in 39 Minutes Feel Like?

October 3, 2017 It’s just after sunrise in New York City. The sky is bathed in pinks and orange as people walk along a long dock toward a white ship. They board the vessel and it sails out to a launchpad further out in the water, where a spaceship strapped to a giant...

from govexec

This Is the Way Cassini Ends

September 15, 2017 In the early morning hours on Friday, Cassini cruised into Saturn’s upper atmosphere at tens of thousands of miles per hour, getting closer to the planet than ever before. The bus-sized orbiter, jostled by the dense atmosphere, fired its thrusters to keep its antenna pointed at Earth and transmitted data...

NASA's New Space Telescope Is in Harvey's Path

August 28, 2017 As tropical storm Harvey continues to drench Houston, turning streets into muddy rivers, NASA workers are keeping watch over a giant $8.6 billion space telescope at the edge of the city. The James Webb Space Telescope is currently sitting inside a massive, sealed cryogenic chamber at the Johnson Space Center,...

from govexec

NASA's New Space Telescope Is in Harvey's Path

August 28, 2017 As tropical storm Harvey continues to drench Houston, turning streets into muddy rivers, NASA workers are keeping watch over a giant $8.6 billion space telescope at the edge of the city. The James Webb Space Telescope is currently sitting inside a massive, sealed cryogenic chamber at the Johnson Space Center,...

Using Twitter to Save a Newborn From a Flood

August 28, 2017 As torrential rain continued and floods swelled in Texas this weekend, thousands of people trapped in Harvey’s path started calling 911 and other emergency lines for help. When they couldn’t get through, some started tweeting. “Please help I’m stranded with my kids I need help fast,” a user wrote to...

Using Twitter to Save a Newborn From a Flood

August 28, 2017 As torrential rain continued and floods swelled in Texas this weekend, thousands of people trapped in Harvey’s path started calling 911 and other emergency lines for help. When they couldn’t get through, some started tweeting. “Please help I’m stranded with my kids I need help fast,” a user wrote to...

Why the Curiosity Rover Stopped Singing 'Happy Birthday' to Itself

August 11, 2017 When the Curiosity rover studies soil on Mars, it does it with a little shimmy. Its robotic arm collects a pinch of soil and drops it into the sample-analysis unit in the robot’s belly. The unit vibrates at different frequencies, shaking the powdery sample so it settles down into small...