04/26/2017

Author Archives: David W. Brown

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Congress Routinely Calls for a Space Force, but This Time They Mean It

A prominent U.S. House representative is calling for a Space Force. This isn’t the first time Congress has asked for such a thing, but it might be time to take the call seriously.

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The Rocket Engine’s Unlikely Role in Shaping Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

As instruments of war and exploration, rocket engines have not only shaped history but revealed the values and priorities of the nations that build them. They intensified the Cold War, shaped the aftermath of the Soviet collapse, and govern our Russia policy today. As New Space stacks success atop success, they might herald the decline of NASA as the preeminent organization for landing humans on other worlds.

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When Every Planet Is Funded but Your Own

Planetary science has never had a budget this good. With Earth on the ropes, however, it’s hard to feel good about it.

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How Venus Will Get Its Groove Back

NASA hasn’t launched a mission to Venus in 28 years. This is how a group of scientists will change that.

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Redefinition of Planet Includes Any Ball in Space That’s Not a Star

Scientists are arguing that are arguing that a planet should be defined by what it is, rather than what it orbits. There would be 110 planets in our solar system, but it makes a surprising amount of sense.

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How NASA Will Protect Europa’s Whales (Spoiler: It Involves a Self-Destruct Switch)

NASA has a plan to protect Europa’s whales and any other lifeforms we may find on our travels from harmful Earth microbes.

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The Purpose of the Telescopes Is to Give Us Back the Galaxy

The purpose of telescopes is to give us back the galaxy. You can see a picture of Saturn’s rings and feel nothing, but see Saturn’s rings with your own eyes, and suddenly you feel the Earth spinning on its axis and flying about the Sun.