Dennis M. Hope claims to own the moon. He's been taking advantage of an obscure international treaty loophole since 1980, selling off lunar property, and declaring himself owner of the Lunar Embassy, and President of the Galactic Government. Sound like a joke? It's not. It's just business.
China’s lunar rover, Jade Rabbit, landed on the moon to study the satellite’s terrain, geology, and lava flows. What else might it find? Dirty laundry, golf balls, bags of human waste, and an American flag. There are loads of items left on the moon by NASA’s Apollo missions -- still perfectly preserved because the moon lacks a destructive atmosphere. With a handful of countries announcing plans for future lunar missions, a number of scientists are arguing that moon trash is an archeological treasure that should be preserved and studied by future generations. But with no laws or lunar governing body to protect, say, the first footprint on the moon, some worry that America’s lunar heritage could be destroyed by a new generation of explorers rushing to reach the moon.
And now for a project that sounds more like something from a Pixar movie than the next big thing in space exploration…the High Altitude Lensing Observatory, or HALO, could be the Hubble telescope’s successor in deep space imaging – but instead of orbiting earth from space, scientists are hoping to hang this giant telescope from a great…big…balloon.
One of the scientists working on the project is Dr. Richard Massey, an astronomer at The Royal Observatory in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Our sky guys join us with the latest news on space - starting with how the shutdown affected our monitoring programs. We also talk about the Orionid meteor showers, two missions to Mars, and a new iPhone app for checking the location of spy satellites.
If you think there are too many food deserts in cities across the United States, try finding some fresh produce in outer space. Naturally, NASA makes sure astronauts living on the International Space Station don’t go hungry, but since it costs about $10,000 to send a single pound of food to the I.S.S., you can bet they don’t see a lot of leafy greens.
That cost is just one reason growing fresh food in outer space is a crucial step in the future of manned space exploration. Jesse Hirsch is a staff writer for Modern Farmer, where you can find his article, “Space Farming: The Final Frontier”.
There are some ways NASA can learn about deep space without sending anyone – or anything – into orbit. For example, scientists are studying meteorite impacts by recreating them here on earth at the NASA Ames Vertical Gun Range… the gun shoots projectiles up to fifteen thousand miles per hour into materials designed to simulate the surface of the moon, Mars, and even asteroids. Producer Zach Nugent spoke with Adam Mann, an astronomy and physics reporter for Wired, who visited the Ames facility to see the gun in action.
Astronauts Mark and Scott Kelly are the only siblings who have both traveled in space. The fact that they are identical twins makes them unique test subjects for a new scientific experiment being conducted by NASA to study the effects of long term space travel on the human body.
Jacob Aron is a technology reporter for New Scientist and creator of the website, “Just a Theory.” He wrote about the Kelly brothers “Twin Mission” in the latest issue of New Scientist magazine.
As we learned from Joe Hanson, space weather can be an amazing thing. As receiving real-time space weather forecasts is becoming more of a reality, it would be good to familiarize yourself with some of the weather events you can expect to see. We’ve compiled a list to test your space weather knowledge. All of these events sound fantastic and have been the fodder for many a Sci-Fi plot, but do you know which one of these 4 space weather events isn’t real?
It’s summer storm season, and before heading out of the house it’s not a bad idea to take a quick glance at your local Doppler Radar to avoid getting caught in a downpour. The breadth and scope of weather forecasting has advanced rapidly in the past few decades – now, the United Kingdom’s National Weather Service is partnering with NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to begin providing forecasts of space weather in near real-time. We wanted to get a better idea of what a space forecast might sound like, so we called Joe Hanson - host and writer of the PBS digital studio’s It’s Okay To Be Smart.
Florida’s Aerospace Economic Development Agency is making plans to build a new commercial spaceport not far from the Kennedy Space Center – home of NASA’s now retired shuttle program. There’s just one problem: the land is already occupied. To learn more, producer Taylor Quimby caught up with Tampa Bay Times reporter Craig Pittman – who wrote about Space Florida’s proposal to build on top of an 18th century sugar factory and archaeological site called the Elliott Plantation.