After 14-year dance with Saturn, Cassini prepares for grand finale

After 14-year dance with Saturn, Cassini prepares for  grand finale

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION, Cassini Imaging Team, SWRI, JPL, ESA, NASA] Cassini, a robot spacecraft launched in 1997 by NASA, became close enough in 2002 to resolve many rings and moons of its destination planet: Saturn. At that time, Cassini snapped several images during an engineering test. Several of those images were combined […]

It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s a UFO . . . it’s a drone?

It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s a UFO . . . it’s a drone?

[There have been few UFO sightings in recent years, with the exception of India (see one example below). But there has been a dramatic increase in the number of unmanned aerial vehicles (drones).] The Indian Air Force, and security agencies at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport, have been put on alert for aerial threats […]

Looking down on the Perseid meteor shower from space

Looking down on the Perseid meteor shower from space

CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION / Ron Garan, ISS Expedition 28 Crew, NASA [People on] planet Earth typically watch meteor showers by looking up. But this remarkable view, captured on August 13, 2011 by astronaut Ron Garan, caught a Perseid meteor by looking down. From Garan’s perspective onboard the International Space Station orbiting at […]

Wanted: Reusable spaceplane to launch satellites

Wanted: Reusable spaceplane to launch satellites

So DARPA wants a reusable spaceplane. I mean, who doesn’t? For decades, space experts have tried to design quick-turnover, reusable launch systems. So far, however, no one has made one that works. “There really isn’t any kind of vehicle today that does exactly what they’re asking people to do,” Micah Walter-Range, director of research and […]

Astronauts snag care package, get set to monitor crises below from on high

Astronauts snag care package, get set to monitor crises below from on high

[CLICK ON IMAGE FOR HIGH RESOLUTION , Steve Swanson, Expedition 39 Crew, NASA] In mid-April, the International Space Station captured the unmanned SpaceX Dragon capsule sent to resupply the orbiting outpost. Pictured above, the station’s Canadarm2 had just grabbed the commercial spaceship. The Dragon capsule was filled with over 5000 lbs (2260 kilos) of supplies […]

Space view of warm Sochi

Space view of warm Sochi

The 2014 Winter Olympics officially began with an extravagant opening ceremony in Sochi, Russia, today (Feb. 7), and even NASA has embraced the spirit of the games with striking new satellite views of Olympic sites from orbit. The newly released photos of Sochi Winter Olympics venues from space were captured by a NASA instrument on the Earth-watching […]

What if all satellites stopped working?

What if all satellites stopped working?

Here is what might happen if we suddenly encountered a day without satellites… 08:00 There was nothing sudden. Planes did not fall out of the sky, the lights didn’t go out or the water supplies fail. At least, not at first. … But outside, the loss of global satellite communications was putting the world in […]

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