A Brief History of Space Travel as Told by the Art That Inspired It

Humanity has been obsessed with exploring the stars for millennia, it just took a little while for us to obtain the means of actually doing so. In his new book, The Art of Space, author Ron Miller explores both how we developed the technology necessary for space travel and how that technology has steadily migrated… » 12/07/14 4:00pm 12/07/14 4:00pm

We're Running Out of the Nuclear Fuel That Powers Space Travel

Rosetta's lander lasted just 60 hours on a comet after it bounced into the dark shadows of a cliff, where its solar panels couldn't power the vehicle. Why didn't it carry a more reliable power source, say a nuclear battery like one that's unfailingly fueled Voyager for decades? It's a simple question with a… » 12/02/14 12:30pm 12/02/14 12:30pm

Why We Should Keep Trying to Time Travel

H.G. Wells coined the term "time machine" all the way back in 1895, just a decade before Einstein published his groundbreaking paper on special relativity that would begin show how time travel is possible. The fascination with using technology to look into the past or the future hasn't faded in the last century. And… » 11/20/14 10:03am 11/20/14 10:03am

The Futuristic Technology That Could Enable Interstellar Travel

Technically savvy scientists and engineers have put much effort into conceiving far-future technologies that might make possible near- light-speed travel. You can learn a lot about their ideas by browsing the web. It will take many centuries for humans to make any of those ideas real, I think. But they do convince me… » 11/14/14 2:08pm 11/14/14 2:08pm

Yes, Time Travel Is Possible; Here's How

Time travel's been one of man's wildest fantasies for centuries. It's long been a popular trend in movies and fiction, inspiring everything from Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol to H.G. Wells' The Time Machine to the Charlton Heston shrine that is The Planet of the Apes. And with the opening of Interstellar » 11/05/14 1:25pm 11/05/14 1:25pm

Why Space Travel Matters More Than Ever

Yesterday, somewhere in the Mojave desert, investigators began the long process of understanding the events that led to the tragic accident that killed one pilot and left another injured. And even after they finish, plenty of questions about the future of the commercial space industry will remain. But the one we'll… » 11/01/14 10:26am 11/01/14 10:26am

Kraft Foods Gave Away a Real Spaceship Simulator in 1959

If you were an American kid in the 1950s and 60s you were bombarded with an amazing promise: one day, when you're all grown up, you'll be able to vacation on the moon. But until then you'll have to settle for space-adventure TV shows and comic books. Unless, of course, you won this real live space simulator from 1959. » 10/23/14 3:29pm 10/23/14 3:29pm

Wernher von Braun Predicted We'd Send Men to Mars No Sooner Than 2050s

Student researchers at MIT have concluded that given current technology, any colonists to Mars would die after about 68 days. Mars One, the company that hopes to put people on Mars by the 2025 (and film a reality TV show there, so you know they're legit) insists that the MIT researchers are wrong. But as any student… » 10/15/14 1:20pm 10/15/14 1:20pm

How Mad Men-Era Americans Imagined the World Would Look In 1970

The AMC show Mad Men is in its final season, with its mid-season finale (yeah, I don't know what that means exactly either) airing this past Sunday. The show started with 1960 as its backdrop, and we now see characters in the world of 1969. A lot changed in that decade and, of course, it's a fictional representation… » 5/27/14 6:21pm 5/27/14 6:21pm

Escape the Devastation of Future Earth on a Luxurious Space Mayflower

Worried that Earth may soon suffer from overpopulation and irreversible environmental damage? Worry not, my fellow passengers of Spaceship Earth! In the future, we'll just hop on our space-faring Mayflowers to go find habitable planets. At least that was the promise of this Sunday comic strip from 1959. » 3/26/14 4:32pm 3/26/14 4:32pm