NASA's big move to search for life on Mars – and to bring rocks home

This summer, NASA's Mars Perseverance rover is taking the next giant leap in our search for signs of life beyond Earth.

Melissa Rice, Associate Professor of Planetary Science, Western Washington University • conversation
July 29, 2020 ~7 min

Tags:  space  nasa  mars  life-on-mars  microbial-life  mars-mission-2020

Duckweed is an incredible, radiation-fighting astronaut food – and by changing how it is grown, we made it better

Duckweed is the perfect space food: small, fast-growing and nutritious. By studying how light levels changed the production of radiation-fighting antioxidants, researchers made it even better.

Barbara Demmig-Adams, Professor of Plant Ecology and Molecular Biology, University of Colorado Boulder • conversation
July 14, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: space food nasa plants nutrition light farming antioxidants radiation micronutrients

The UAE's Mars mission seeks to bring Hope to more places than the red planet

A new country launches a mission to Mars. A space expert explains what this means for the Middle East and the African continent.

Wendy Whitman Cobb, Professor of Strategy and Security Studies, US Air Force School of Advanced Air and Space Studies • conversation
July 13, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: space mars india russia united-states space-exploration japan international-space-station united-arab-emirates mars-exploration space-race

Why are scientists trying to manufacture organs in space?

Why are scientists trying to grow organs at the International Space Station? People live on Earth not in zero-gravity. A stem cell expert explains why it is useful to do these experiments in space.

Alysson R. Muotri, Professor of Pediatrics and Cellular and Molecular Medicine, University of California San Diego • conversation
July 8, 2020 ~5 min

Tags:  space  biology  international-space-station  artificial-organs  microgravity  space-health  organs  experiments

Curious Kids: What would happen if gravity was reduced by half?

If gravity was half as strong, you could jump much higher.

Jacco van Loon, Astrophysicist and Director of Keele Observatory, Keele University • conversation
June 29, 2020 ~5 min

Tags: space gravity curious-kids

Meteorites from Mars contain clues about the red planet's geology

Martian meteorites allow scientists here on Earth to decode that planet's geology, more than a decade before the first missions are scheduled to bring rocks back home from Mars.

Arya Udry, Assistant Professor of Igneous Petrology, Planetary Science, University of Nevada, Las Vegas • conversation
June 16, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: space nasa mars gravity volcanoes antarctica earth meteorites outer-space asteroids national-science-foundation mars-rover sahara rock life-on-mars morocco martian-volcanoes

First space tourists will face big risks, as private companies gear up for paid suborbital flights

When it comes to commercial space tourism, suborbital flight are the first frontier. But what are the risks? Are there health requirements? What should you know before taking such a way-out trip?

Sara M. Langston, Assistant Professor of Spaceflight Operations, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University • conversation
June 11, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: space astronomy nasa spacex space-tourism boeing elon-musk blue-origin lockheed-martin orion

How Europe's CHEOPS satellite will improve the hunt for exoplanets

The primary objective of CHEOPS is to better understand the planets that we’ve already found. And its mission is now in full swing.

Jason Steffen, Assistant Professor of Physics and Astronomy, University of Nevada, Las Vegas • conversation
May 27, 2020 ~6 min

Tags:  space  astronomy  exoplanets  kepler-mission  planet  exoplanet-discovery  tess

Half the matter in the universe was missing – we found it hiding in the cosmos

Cosmologists had only been able to find half the matter that should exist in the universe. With the discovery of a new astronomical phenomenon and new telescopes, researchers just found the rest.

Jean-Pierre Macquart, Associate Professor of Astrophysics, Curtin University • conversation
May 27, 2020 ~11 min

Tags: space astronomy cosmology dark-matter universe telescope galaxies matter neutrons fast-radio-bursts protons baryon

SpaceX reaches for milestone in spaceflight – a private company launches astronauts into orbit

SpaceX's launch of astronauts to the International Space Station will make it the first private company to launch humans to space. The effort has ramifications for NASA and spaceflight in general.

Wendy Whitman Cobb, Professor of Strategy and Security Studies, US Air Force School of Advanced Air and Space Studies • conversation
May 22, 2020 ~7 min

Tags:  space  nasa  space-shuttle  space-travel  international-space-station  spacex  iss  space-tourism  boeing  elon-musk  virgin-galactic  blue-origin  project-artemis

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