For a long time, outer space was conceptually and legally a no-man’s land – that changed on October 4th, 1967 when the Soviet Union launched a satellite called Sputnik into Earth’s orbit, triggering an international space race and calls for internationally binding laws to govern space exploration. Last amended in 1979, the outer space treaty drafted in 1967 facilitated smooth, peaceful interactions between nations capable of probing space. As the prospect of civilian space travel and settlement appears more accessible, international space law may be in need of revision. Joining us to discuss the field is Michael Listner, President of the International Space Safety Foundation.
All of the pleasure, none of the guilt. Our Saturday show gets you caught up, in a convenient snack pack size. This week….A video game attempts to replicate the experience of autism; spying in space with the help of spectroscopy; a look back to when Peyton Place was in its heyday, almost 60 years ago; the delicious and sweet tradition of capturing maple syrup; making music by “playing” a tower; and a musician gives a private concert in Studio D, then talks about teenage inspiration and her love of pie.
The existence of planets outside our solar system was first confirmed in 1992. Since then, nearly 900 extra solar planets have been identified, with NASA’s Keppler Mission detecting more than 18,000 potential planets, including 262 in the so-called “Goldilocks Zone,” or habitable range from the stars they orbit. Now, the American Museum of Natural History is breaking new ground in the observation of far-distant planets using high-tech spectroscopy and software for Project 1640.
From the imagination of Ray Bradbury to the front pages of our newspapers, the prospect of traversing vast reaches of space and seeing Mars firsthand has long inhabited and excited the idealistic public consciousness. However, our recent talk with psychiatrist Mathias Basner revealed that the odyssey comes with a number of physiological costs. Here are some of the most prominent known bodily effects of long-term space travel:
If you think it’s difficult to get enough sleep in an age of 24 hours news cycles and the allure of Facebook surfing, consider how hard it must be without the sun…or gravity. The first of many studies on the Mars500 Project have been released, and it documented the sleeping habits of five men isolated on earth for 520 days.
Our conversation today about our genetic wanderlust got us thinking about the interstellar urge to roam. Luckily, the Dutch-based Mars One is planning the first human trip to Mars in 2023. If you have ten years to spare—and are resilient, adaptable, trusting, curious, creative, and resourceful—you may be the ideal candidate. Before you rush to fill out your application, consider these cinematic warnings about space travel. Because everything that can go wrong in outer space, will go wrong. Yeah, Murphy's Law is intergalactic.
Three mice have returned home from ninety-one days aboard the international space station. The trip was the longest in space for any animal besides humans.Jessica Hamzelou wrote about what these intrepid space mice reveal about how space travel and zero gravity affect physiology for New ScientistMagazine and joins us now to go over the results.
Astronomy is one of those fields where it just doesn’t pay to procrastinate. The last time Earthlings could spot the planet Venus crossing the yellow disk of the sun was in 2004. But if you don’t take a look this time around, here’s when you’ll get your next opportunity: December 10th of 2117.
The Seattle Space Needle's 50th anniversary is Saturday. Though the top of the Needle has been off-white for years, it's being painted its original color, "galaxy gold," for the anniversary.
Credit Dan Callister / Getty Images
The sculpture on Peter Steinbrueck's desk belonged to his father. The dancer figure, with its arms skyward, served as inspiration for the Space Needle's design.
Credit Martin Kaste / NPR
Preliminary design of the Seattle Space Needle for the 1962 Seattle World's Fair Exhibition. Victor Steinbrueck did the original drawing in August 1960.
Credit Courtesy of The Seattle Public Library
Jeff Wright (center), whose family owns the Space Needle, starts the repainting of the iconic structure on Tuesday with his 15-year-old daughter, Mauren, and Space Needle board member Stuart Rolfe. The new color is the original color, dubbed "galaxy gold."
Seattle's Space Needle turns 50 on Saturday. Originally built as a tourist attraction for the city's 1962 World's Fair, the structure was meant to evoke the future. Now the future is here, and the Needle has become the city's favorite antique.
Peter Steinbrueck traces the tower's lineage to an abstract sculpture that sits in his office. Steinbrueck is an architect and former City Council member, and the sculpture used to belong to his father, Victor, also an architect.
The space shuttle Discovery is loaded onto the back of a modified 747 at Kennedy Space Center on April 15. The plane will ferry the shuttle to Washington, D.C., on April 17, where it will be permanently installed at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.
On Tuesday morning, space shuttle Discovery will become the first of NASA's three shuttles — plus a shuttle prototype — to travel to its new retirement home.
NASA flew its last shuttle flight in July. Since then, it's been prepping the spaceships to become museum displays. And even though the shuttles are headed to places like Los Angeles and New York rather than the space station, figuring out how to get them there has still been a major undertaking.