Explore the vast reaches of space and mankind’s continuing efforts to conquer the stars, including theories such as the Big Bang, the International Space Station, plus what the future holds for space travel and exploration.
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From a distance, a space shuttle looks pretty sturdy. It's enormous and solid, and it can withstand extreme temperatures when it enters the Earth's atmosphere. But in some ways, a space shuttle is delicate.
But can a commercial spacecraft take off on its own from the ground, travel into outer space and land again on a runway? That's the goal of XCOR Aerospace, and it starts with the EZ-Rocket. In this article, we'll learn about the technology behind the EZ-Rocket and see how XCOR plans to expand on this technology in the future.
Some of the most interesting objects in our solar system are also the smallest or largest. In addition to the sun, planets, and moons, our solar system has a variety of small objects such as asteroids, comets, stars, meteors, and moons. These have affected what has happened on Earth in many ways.
The smallest and most-distant planet in our solar system is tiny, icy Pluto. It is even smaller than our moon, and wasn't discovered until 1930 — the only planet discovered in the twentieth century.
Our planet Earth is part of a solar system that consists of nine (and possibly ten) planets orbiting a giant, fiery star we call the sun. For thousands of years, astronomers studying the solar system have noticed that these planets march across the sky in a predictable way.
Mars, which is the fourth planet from the sun and the third smallest in size, got its name because of its rusty red color. People associated the planet's blood-red color with war, so they named it Mars, after the Roman god of war.
It's bigger, stronger, more efficient and more precise: The Delta IV Heavy is arguably the greatest rocket built to date. It can put 13 tons of satellite payload into its intended orbit with fuel to spare, and that's just the beginning.
By Carolyn Snare
The accounts are oddly similar: darting lights in a night sky, a hovering disc, radio interference. How can so many people be "mistaken"? Learn about the evidence for and against alien UFOs and check out some of the stranger tales of contact.
By Stephanie Watson
We know who won – top-runner SpaceShipOne. We know what the team receives for that accomplishment: $10 million and an obscenely gigantic trophy. But what about the story behind the contest? Learn about the rules, restrictions, red tape, test crashes, successful launches and the technological innovations that may get you into sub-orbit sooner than you think.
By Lacy Perry
It's launch time for the first privately funded space flight. In the course of battle for the X Prize, a group called Scaled Composites has built and tested SpaceShipOne, a sub-orbital spacecraft intended to carry tourists on the ride of their life. Learn all about the craft.
Of course we want to go to Mars. Until we figure it out though, roving robots with names like Spirit, Opportunity, Sojourner and Curiosity are our best bet for digging up dirt on our nearest planetary neighbor. Want to go along for the ride?
Get a sneak peek (even before NASA scientists) at a new type of spacecraft that could be jolted through space by electromagnets.
By Kevin Bonsor