Space Science

Better asteroid alerts

By Tom Jones

October 31, 2018

NASA plans to spend $3.8 million over the next four years adding two telescopes to its asteroid search network to do a more complete job of detecting small objects as they are closing in on Earth.

Quantum promises

By Amanda Miller

September 27, 2018

Precise navigation will be a necessity for safe human exploration of Mars and other celestial bodies in deep space. A pair of experiments about to get underway could change the way this navigation is done, and for the better.

Taking on the sun

By Tom Risen

August 31, 2018

NASA’s Parker Solar Probe, now on its way toward the sun, must survive the searing temperatures in the solar corona to unlock the processes driving the solar wind and coronal mass ejections that can harm satellites and electronics on Earth. We spoke to the scientists and engineers behind Parker’s thermal protection strategy.

Destination: Mercury

By Adam Hadhazy

August 31, 2018

The BepiColombo mission to Mercury, getting underway in October, could answer vexing questions about the innermost planet’s core and its Earth-like magnetic field. And the answers could shed light on planetary matters far beyond our solar system.

Drone tech opens door to Mars Helicopter

By Tom Risen

June 6, 2018

NASA’s announcement that it will add a tiny helicopter to its planned Mars 2020 rover came after a series of test flights inside a vacuum chamber proved the feasibility of adapting consumer drone technologies into a craft capable of flying in an atmosphere just 1 percent as dense as Earth’s.

The dreamers

By Henry Canaday

April 30, 2018

A cadre of technologists and entrepreneurs think asteroids could be the linchpin for establishing an entire economy in space

Nuclear nonsolution

March 30, 2018

Detonating a nuclear bomb is unlikely to protect Earth from a far-off asteroid or comet headed our way

Reaching Europa

By Tom Risen

March 30, 2018

The White House wants to steer the launch of NASA’s proposed Europa Clipper spacecraft to a commercial rocket

The case for WFIRST

By Amanda Miller

March 30, 2018

The Trump budget would cancel development of the Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope

Exploration telepresence

By Tom Jones

September 28, 2017

Astronauts in Mars orbit could orchestrate complex exploration of the surface

Course corrector

By Adam Hadhazy

September 28, 2017

Managers of proposed mission hope to protect Earth from giant space rocks

Beating Curiosity

By Leonard David

August 31, 2017

A next generation robotic rover could start rolling across the Mars surface in 2021

Defending Earth

By Michael Peck

February 9, 2017

Should the military have a greater role against wayward asteroids and comets?

An asteroid companion

By Tom Jones

November 21, 2016

NASA planners see opportunities for robotic and human exploration

Planet Spotting

By Adam Hadhazy

July 30, 2016

Delivering photos of Earthlike exoplanets