Space Transportation Systems

Space Transportation Systems (STS) are the systems and architectures that deliver payloads and humans to outer space. Learn about space shuttles, rockets and other spacecraft.


3-D Printing Your Own Tractor Beam Levitation Device

Engineers devised a way to levitate and control matter using acoustic waves, and they're sharing their plans with the public.

Elon Musk Wants You to Go to Mars for Just $200,000

Who says Mars is just for astronauts? Not Elon Musk. He wants to send you to the red planet for a few hundred grand in a spiffy carbon fiber spacecraft.

China’s Space Station Is on a Crash Course With Earth

According to some predictions, the Tiangong-1 facility is out of the Chinese government’s control. Is a devastating re-entry in the station’s future?

How to Spot the International Space Station From Where You Live

NASA's Spot the Station feature will text or email you when the ISS is about to be overhead. And you won't even need a telescope to see it!

SpaceX Just Hired a Superhero Design Team for Its Spacesuits

Elon Musk's SpaceX hired a creator of superhero and sci-fi costumes to help design its next-generation astronaut gear. Experts say that's not as weird as it sounds.

Discovering the Chemistry of Space Through Telescopes

Gazing into deep space with a telescope offers mind-blowing imagery, but perhaps even more awe-inspiring is how scientists use telescopes to learn the chemistry of space.

Setting Sail for the Stars

Solar sails may become the go-to technology for transporting cargo in space.

What's Way Cooler Than Naming a Kid? Naming a NASA Spacecraft

From the beginning, NASA has sought emblematic names for the objects it blasts into space.

What does it take to turn a spaceship into a museum piece?

Spacecraft are expensive, complex machines that allow us to explore the universe. But what happens when it's time for them to retire? We'll share what it takes to turn a space-worthy craft into a museum-worthy one.

How to Pilot a Starship

Cars are so 20th century. You need your very own starship (and a quick tutorial on operating it). Before you press a single button on your vessel, read this article. It might even tell you why that pilot's seat is designed for square buttocks.