NASA Presses on With SLS Development as Launch Vehicle Undergoes Critical Design Review

From NASA: "Artist concept of NASA's Space Launch System wireframe design. The SLS Program is kicking off its critical design review May 11 at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama." Image Credit: NASA/MSFC

From NASA: “Artist concept of NASA’s Space Launch System wireframe design. The SLS Program is kicking off its critical design review May 11 at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.” Image Credit: NASA/MSFC

NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) Program, designing NASA’s next heavy lift launch vehicle intended to carry spacecraft and astronauts […]

Congress Seeks Significant Shift in NASA Budget Priorities

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden media briefing at Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral, Florida prior to successful Orion EFT-1 launch on Dec. 5, 2014.   Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden media briefing at Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral, Florida prior to successful Orion EFT-1 launch on Dec. 5, 2014. Credit: Ken Kremer/kenkremer.com

One thing seems fairly certain about NASA’s budget in Fiscal Year 2016 – a contentious clash is afoot between Congress and the Obama Administration on the space […]

'Ocean Worlds Exploration Program': New Budget Proposal Calls for Missions to Europa, Enceladus and Titan

Artist’s conception of Europa’s interior, with water rising through cracks in the surface, depositing salts similar to sea salt on Earth. The ocean below may be a habitable environment for some kind of life. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

The exploration of the outer Solar System has revealed a plethora of amazing worlds, the likes of which […]

PHOTOS: Atlas-V Delivers Lightsail and Air Force X-37B to Orbit Packed With Cubesats and Experiments

The Air Force AFSPC-5 mission launched into clear blue skies from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station today. Onboard is the secretive X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (its fourth mission) and a variety of cubists and experiments for the NAVY, NRO, USAF and NASA, including the Lightsail test article from The Planetary Society. Photo Credit: Alan Walters / AmericaSpace

The Air Force AFSPC-5 mission launched into clear blue skies from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station today. Onboard is the secretive X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (its fourth mission) and a variety of cubists and experiments for the NAVY, NRO, USAF and NASA, including the Lightsail test article from The Planetary Society. Photo Credit: Alan […]

Researchers Develop New Technique to Search for Chemical Evidence of Life on Mars

Despite decades of searching, definitive evidence for life on Mars, past or present, has still remained elusive and controversial. Confirmation of such a finding would need to be thoroughly tested and documented, and now researchers at the University of Kansas have developed a new technique that they hope would help to do just that, […]

Fourth Atlas-V Spaceplane Launch Heralds X-37B Program Shift As Centaur to Deploy Naval Satellites at Higher Inclination

The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV) at Vandenberg Air Force Base after completing 674 days in space. A total of three X-37B missions have been completed, totaling 1,367 days on orbit. OTV-4, launching on the AFSPC-5 mission May 20, is more focused on military spaceplane payload development instead of X-37B flight testing of its […]

The Planetary Society's LightSail to Launch Aboard Atlas-V May 20

From The Planetary Society: “The Planetary Society’s LightSail solar sailing spacecraft is scheduled to ride a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket to orbit in 2016 with its parent satellite, Prox-1.” Image Credit: Josh Spradling /The Planetary Society (http://sail.planetary.org/gallery/lightsail.html)

The idea of solar sails carrying satellites and humans into space has been something bandied about for […]

Flying (Mostly) Friendly Skies: Northrop Grumman Developing Airplane to Cruise Atmosphere of Venus

Artist’s conception of the Venus Atmospheric Maneuverable Platform (VAMP) aircraft in the atmosphere of Venus. Image Credit: Northrop Grumman artist’s concept

With so much attention now on the rovers and spacecraft at Mars, Saturn, Ceres, comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, and, soon, Pluto, it may seem like Earth’s closest planetary neighbor Venus has been forgotten again. But no, […]

Dark Material in Fractures on Europa's Surface Is Sea Salt, New Research Suggests

The darker-colored material within the fractures and elsewhere on Europa’s surface might be sea salt brought up from the ocean below. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Ted Stryk

For over a decade, scientists have been curious about the long fractures on Europa’s icy surface and the darker-colored material they contain, as well as other relatively young geological […]

After EFT-1, Orion Crew Module Subjected to Intense Heat Shield Inspection

Engineers from NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California, and NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, remove segments of a heat-resistant material called Avcoat from the surface of the Orion heat shield, the protective shell designed to help the next-generation crew module and its future occupants withstand the heat of atmospheric […]