On December 12, SpaceX will launch a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, sending an uncrewed Dragon cargo capsule filled with supplies to the International Space Station. No big deal, except that two components, both the first stage rocket and the spacecraft, have already flown on…
In what will be a historic first for the US space agency, NASA has agreed to send supplies to the International Space Station aboard a previously used Falcon 9 rocket booster.
On Sunday, a rocket-engine exploded during ignition tests at the SpaceX facility in Texas. The incident marks a setback for the company in what has otherwise been a pretty good year.
NASA engineers are currently hard at work developing Space Launch System 1—what will be the biggest, most powerful rocket ever built. The inaugural launch of this behemoth won’t happen any earlier than 2019, but NASA has released a spectacular simulation of the launch to whet our appetites.
Here’s the thing about NASA’s rocket scientists: They’re smart. And maybe a little weird. When you get literal rocket scientists to channel their energy into something silly like a pumpkin carving contest, the results are bound to be incredible. Seriously:
We usually see rocket launches and landings from above. But there’s something about seeing the whole thing happen from the ground-up that’s just so much better.
Certain aspects of the Star Wars universe (FTL travel, force magic) are clearly impossible. But some technologies, like extremely high-powered thrusters and even lightsabers, may one day be feasible.
Is it possible to have an eco-conscious rocket? While that may seem like a laughable concept, NASA is testing new green propellants to replace hydrazine, the current toxic and corrosive standard moseying around space.
Every strut counts, as they say. On June 28th, a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying a Dragon capsule stuffed full of supplies for the International Space Station blew up in mid-air, minutes after launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Today, Elon Musk revealed the cause: A single, flimsy strut.
Since we seem to be on the topic of fantastical power sources today, it’s my solemn duty to inform you that respected airplane manufacturer Boeing has aspirations to build a jet engine powered by lasers and nuclear explosions.
On July 14th, the New Horizons spacecraft will make history when it sails past Pluto, formerly known as the ninth planet. Even more incredible is how fast we got there. The spacecraft traveled 3 billion miles in nine and a half years. That’s about a million miles a day for almost ten years. How the heck did we do it?
Sometimes, all a day really needs is a nice video of rocket components exploding during stress-testing. Why, hello there Space Launch System! Did your booster composite case get over-pressurized with water to test how the materials would withstand launch-strain? Perfect!
It lives! The RS-25 rocket engines from the space shuttle have been repurposed for the Space Launch System, NASA's rocket for deep space exploration. The engines hot fired for the first time since 2009 in this 500-second burn.
Parts of this engine were 3D printed using copper alloy materials. All of them survived their first-ever hot fire test, and 18 more hot fire tests in different injector and thrust chamber assembly configurations. The future is so cool.
How long does it take to dissolve 1 kilogram of nitrogen in 15 kilogram of hydrazine? A not-so-little spacecraft called out for help, and in less than two hours, the internet found an answer.
It was a crowded field on Monday, with commenters weighing in on everything from zombie-cakes to the first families of science fiction to the hidden motivations of flesh-eating plants, but only one comment can be comment of the day and today that comment comes from Rod Brock.
Fuel and oxidizer. Together they make propellant, which can be used to launch a rocket – but for the best results, you need to find the right ratio. Too much of one or the other, and your exhaust velocity begins to drop. Less exhaust velocity means less thrust — and less thrust means you will not go to space today.
Last Wednesday, acclaimed rocket scientist Yvonne Brill died. To honor her, the New York Times' obituary opened by remarking on her "mean beef stroganoff."
It might be the preserve of fantastical action movies, but we've probably all wondered at some point or other if it's actually possible to fly through the air by firing bullets down at the ground.
For personal reasons, I had to miss yesterday's NASA press conference, which gave an update on International Space Station operations following the failure and crash of a Progress resupply vehicle last week. When I returned home and saw the headlines about the briefing from other news sites, I thought, "Wow, everyone…