Thirty years ago today, a movie with a very recognizable cast opened in theaters. It wasn’t a big hit, and has since all but faded away to a point where it’s very difficult to watch anywhere legally. And that’s a damn shame, because Space Camp was, and remains, a fine piece of popular entertainment.
We’ve seen how NASA recreates the vacuum of space right here on Earth, but what about the gravity of space? What about the forces of inertia? When large objects move and behave so differently, how to you train for a mission so you know what to expect when you get there? Like this.
How do you test a new method for CPR in space without actually going into space? You take flight in a microgravity plane, obviously. For the last 20 years, NASA's Reduced Gravity Office has opened up its zero-g planes to college students from around the country, who get the once in a lifetime opportunity to test…
Last week we showed you how NASA simulates space here on Earth, with everything from advanced virtual reality to monstrous thermal vacuum chambers. But all of that still can’t prepare you for how an object, or an experiment, will behave in zero gravity. Sometimes you just have to fly.
Deep in the belly of the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, lie "The Domes." Step into one of them and suddenly you're standing on the surface of Mars, or you're flying high above the Earth, looking out from the International Space Station. This is the Systems Engineering Simulator, where we learned to fly,…
Inside Building 32 at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas sits Chamber A, a marvel of engineering, cleanliness, and design. It’s also the closest you can come to being in space without strapping into a rocket.
While Curiosity was still flying through space, way before it landed on Mars, scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory were busy working with a clone rover back on earth. In a simulation area called the Mars Yard, scientists put the duplicate Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) through a series of experiments to perfect…
So MSL Curiosity has landed. It survived the seven minutes of terror and safely touched down on the surface of Mars. A miracle in its own right. Now that it's there, it needs a way to move around. Anyone who played Lunar Lander and Moon Patrol already knows how they're going to do this: Video games.
We have heard a lot about exoplanets in the past year. But for all the talk about these planets, which orbit a star other than our sun, we still haven't actually seen one.
Numbers, facts, figures, equations. These are all obviously critical components of the space program. But numbers don't speak to our emotions. It's hard to commit millions of dollars and thousand of hours to an equation. We need something visceral that we can connect to.
Through technology, we've developed the ability to reach out into the distant corners of the universe. Rovers, orbiters, and deep-space probes. But regardless of how far away from us they extend, they all reach from a single point of origin: Earth.
There are no hospitals in space. The closest E.R. is back on Earth, and astronauts can't exactly jump in a cab to get there. So what happens if the sun burps out a massive blast of radiation while an astronaut is space-amblin' by?
It's time to talk about the second letter in NASA: Aeronautics. Yes, NASA does mind-blowing things in outer space, but they also want you to get to your family reunion in one piece. NASA is making planes smarter.
Have you ever wondered how the hell spaceships get made? I mean, how does something like the six-legged ATHLETE rover go from an engineering fantasy into an actual working thing? Creativity? Technological know-how? Sure, you need plenty of that. But most of all: It takes the stones to dream up what no one ever…
What if you could use your phone to test the air for toxins? What if you could monitor your health simply by blowing on it? Sounds amazing, right? Nanosensor technology developed by NASA Ames is going to make that a reality.
A few years ago, back when the Constellation Program was still alive, NASA engineers discovered that the Ares I rocket had a crucial flaw, one that could have jeopardized the entire project. They panicked. They plotted. They steeled themselves for the hundreds of millions of dollars it was going to take to make…
Michael Jordan? Muhammad Ali? Joe Montana? Sit down. The world's most amazing athlete works for NASA. Meet the gigantic, six-legged, tool-wielding robot that can hop around an asteroid. Tiger Woods ain't got nothin'.
When you were a kid, did you dream of going into space? Maybe you had a coloring-book about a lunar voyage. Or maybe you and your best friend tried to create anti-gravity out of cleaning products and accidentally killed a tree in your front yard. Y'know, hypothetically.
If any of this sounds even remotely familiar,…
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to walk around on Mars? For 99.99999% of us, this may be as close as we ever get. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory has given us the honor of taking the lid off of this awesome, interactive eye-candy. Basically it's Google Earth, for Mars.
NASA may not be sending anyone to the moon or Mars in the near future, but they've discovered the next best thing: an undersea laboratory three miles off of Key Largo. It's how astronauts do Space Camp.