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REAL SCIENCE: Space X Grasshopper

Republibot 4.0's picture

In the olden days of science fiction, the iconic space ships were silvery cigars that took off and landed standing upright on their four stabilizing tail vanes.

 

With the ongoing improvements to Space-X's Grasshopper rocket, we're getting ever nearer to realizing this early vision of a reusable vehicle.

 

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REAL SCIENCE: Happy Anniversary, Opportunity!

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Back in 2003, NASA sent two robotic rovers to Mars to analyze the soil and look for signs of life.  The mission was supposed to last only three months.

 

It's been ten years, and one of the rovers, Opportunity, is still going strong.

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Space Ships In Museums

Republibot 4.0's picture

I've always been rather fond of the Space Shuttle.  Yeah, it was ultimately a lot of money spent for a little amount of return, and took a terrible toll on the lives of astronauts, but I still get a thrill of excitement whenever I see video of those engines lighting up, and a Space Shuttle ponderously lifting off from the launchpad.

 

So one of the things on my bucket list is to go see the Discovery on display at the Udvay-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA....

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Real Science: Can We Survive On Mars?

Mama Fisi's picture

One thing that people seem to be overlooking, when they imagine humanity terraforming another planet, is that the operative word is "Terra." We developed adapted to the organic and chemical composition of Earth. Our guts need microflora found only on our own planet.

So how are we going to survive on another planet?

http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/future_tense/2013/06/mars_colon...

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REAL SCIENCE: Aloha Mars!

Republibot 4.0's picture

A couple of months ago, we posted an article about a contest to select a team of "gastronauts" to spend a few months cooped up in a habitat on the Big Island of Hawaii, trying out sample menus for a prospective trip to Mars.

Well, here's an update on how that's working out:

http://cosmiclog.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/05/24/18475167-aloha-mars-what-w...

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REAL SCIENCE: Magnetic Portals

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A staple plot device of science fiction stories is the "wormhole," a spatio-temporal anomaly which permits faster-than-light travel between two points by bridging the gap between them via hyperspace or some supradimensional astral plane.

Apparently, they may not be entirely fictional. Elusive, mysterious, and transient, yes, but a NASA program is going to try to find what they call X-points or electron diffision regions which open up from time to time where the solar wind meets the Earth's magnetosphere.

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REAL SCIENCE: "Instant" Pizza, Anyone?

Republibot 4.0's picture

First they brought us communicators, in the form of flip-top cell phones. Now researchers have set their sights on creating the "replicators" from Star Trek, in the form of 3D printers that can concoct pizzas from shelf-stable powdered ingredient packs.

College kids of the future, you may want to pay attention to this one.

http://news.yahoo.com/why-nasa-funding-3d-pizza-printer-133700233.html

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REAL SCIENCE: Now All You Need Is Some Unobtanium

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Over the years, Star Trek tech has inspired a lot of things we now take for granted, but some of the most iconic technologies from the USS Enterprise still elude us.

NASA believes that we may be able to achieve warp drive. They're a little fuzzy on the details, but at least they're actively exploring the possibilities.

http://www.technewsdaily.com/18051-star-trek-warp-drive-possible.html

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