NASA 4D prints new materials and mulls printing self-assembling space stations

NASA 4D prints new materials and mulls printing self-assembling space stations

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Transporting equipment into space is very, very expensive so NASA has turned to 4D printing to help it create new materials and types of space craft.   Space is a harsh unforgiving environment and just getting into orbit is still, despite Elon Musk and SpaceX’s...

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NASA gets ready to trial SEXTANT, its galactic navigation technology

NASA gets ready to trial SEXTANT, its galactic navigation technology

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF There are no accurate maps of deep space but now NASA are creating their own deep space Galactic Positioning System (GPS) using pulsars as galactic beacons.   If you want to travel in deep space, for example, aboard Stephen Hawking’s interstellar spaceship, which admittedly might...

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Space adventurers could be the first true ‘Designer humans’

Space adventurers could be the first true ‘Designer humans’

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Space is the harshest environment known to man and the idea of creating the world’s first genetically altered humans who can survive its extremes “naturally” without the need to take their artificial environments with them is gaining traction.   At last year’s International Astronautical Congress in...

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Revolutionary new single stage Aerospike powered rocket set for 2018 launch

Revolutionary new single stage Aerospike powered rocket set for 2018 launch

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF All of today’s rockets are expensive, complex multi stage systems, but ARCA’s new Aerospike powered rocket will be the world’s first single stage rocket to travel from Earth to orbit.   Today, every rocket that’s launched into space is what is known in the industry...

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Explorers wanted: American government tells NASA to get humanity to Mars

Explorers wanted: American government tells NASA to get humanity to Mars

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The falling cost of space exploration and grand visions are pushing organisations to take the next giant leap – to make us an interplanetary species.   Last week, perhaps in response to the growing interest in Mars from companies such as Boeing, and SpaceX, as well...

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Jeff Bezos announces plans to create the world’s first Moon delivery service

Jeff Bezos announces plans to create the world’s first Moon delivery service

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As agencies around the world race to begin establishing bases and villages on the Moon we’re going to need a company that can help transport all the equipment and supplies.   The cost of going into space has plummeted over the past few years, in...

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NASA unveils plans to restore Mars’ atmosphere within three years

NASA unveils plans to restore Mars’ atmosphere within three years

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF If Mars is ever going to become humanity’s second home it’s going to have to be terraformed, the first step in achieving that is giving it an atmosphere   Mars might be better as the Red planet today but there’s plenty of evidence to suggest...

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Elon Musk announced SpaceX is sending two private citizens to the Moon

Elon Musk announced SpaceX is sending two private citizens to the Moon

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Man hasn’t returned to the Moon since first landing on it 45 years ago, and this will be the first time we go back   Yesterday afternoon at 4PM EST SpaceX CEO and polymath Elon Musk, who was recently in Dubai selling 200 self-driving Teslas, announced...

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NASA’s possible-impossible plasma engine roars into life

NASA’s possible-impossible plasma engine roars into life

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF It’s inevitable that humanity will one day become an interstellar species and engines like these might be the ones to get us there, wherever “there” is.   Franklin Chang-Díaz bounds up a handful of stairs and looks through a porthole cut into the side of...

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NASA just discovered seven Earth like planets

NASA just discovered seven Earth like planets

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The more Earth like planets we discover the more new homes we find for humanity when we finally become an interstellar species   Not just one, but seven Earth sized planets that could potentially harbour life have been identified orbiting a tiny star not too far...

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NASA wants to turn asteroids into spacecraft

NASA wants to turn asteroids into spacecraft

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Turning an asteroid into a spacecraft sounds easy, but it isn’t, however, thanks to 3D printing and some brainy experts we could see the first asteroid spacecraft appear in the 2030’s.   The concept of mining things in space, whether it’s mining the Moon for...

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Scientists in New York have created a working tractor beam

Scientists in New York have created a working tractor beam

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Being able to move objects with light has been science fiction for a long time, but scientists in New York have already made it happen, and they’re now scaling it up.   Science fiction is rapidly becoming a reality, and we can see the evidence...

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NASA unveils its new Mars habitat concept

NASA unveils its new Mars habitat concept

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF When the first astronauts arrive on Mars they’re going to need somewhere to eat, live and sleep, and NASA’s new icy concept could be just the home away from home they always wanted   There are a lot of hoops to jump through before anyone...

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Japan gets ready to test its space junk grabbing space whip

Japan gets ready to test its space junk grabbing space whip

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Space debris is an increasingly serious problem for space agencies who are loosing more space assets because of it than ever before, Japans system, while still as yet unproven might prove to be a credible solution. The Japanese Space Exploration Agency (JAXA) will soon be...

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Self healing nano spaceships travelling at a fifth the speed of light help NASA explore the heavens

Self healing nano spaceships travelling at a fifth the speed of light help NASA explore the heavens

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Many regions of space are still off limits to us because of the extreme distances involved but new self-healing, nano sized spacecraft that can travel at a fifth of the speed of light will help us unlock more mysteries of the universe.   Working with...

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Mining the Moon, Moon Express sets 2017 launch date

Mining the Moon, Moon Express sets 2017 launch date

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The Moon contains trillions of dollars worth of minerals and rare earth metals but mining and transporting them has been technically and commercially challenging, but over the next few decades that could change.   Earlier this year Moon Express, a private venture, founded by billionaire...

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NASA is funding an artificial gravity program

NASA is funding an artificial gravity program

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Astronauts who are exposed to long periods of microgravity suffer health problems when they get back to Earth, an artificial gravity system would replicate the natural gravity of Earth and prevent the problems from occurring.   Microgravity is bad for the bones and muscles. Just...

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Leaked NASA documents show impossible EmDrive might work

Leaked NASA documents show impossible EmDrive might work

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Scientists have demonstrated that an impossible space drive that doesn’t need fuel and that defies physics might actually work, if true then it opens up new possibilities for space exploration.   An experimental propulsion system that seems to violate the laws of physics may actually...

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NASA’s new $8.7Bn space telescope can detect a bumble bee on the Moon

NASA’s new $8.7Bn space telescope can detect a bumble bee on the Moon

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The James Webb’s impressive array of near field IR sensors and high grade optics will allow scientists to learn more about the formation of planets and galaxies as well discover more about the origin of life itself.   The Hubble Space Telescope has given humanity...

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ISS SPHERE drones learn to see and fly around in space all by themselves

ISS SPHERE drones learn to see and fly around in space all by themselves

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF This new milestone will help to pave the way for fully autonomous drones, and vehicles, that can navigate their surroundings without the need for any specific maps or navigation aids.   During an experiment this week on board the International Space Station (ISS) a small drone,...

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