Space Craft


Reaching into the Low Orbit Frontier

Reaching into the Low Orbit Frontier


Posted By on Jan 6, 2014

One of the great things about working on Astronomy Cast is that sometimes I get to learn about things that I just didn’t fully appreciate in the past. Today I’m preparing for an episode on amateur/community spacecraft. I knew this was something that was going on, but I hadn’t appreciated the sheer diversity of missions that are in the works. In order to try and get my notes straight for today’s episode, I am...

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Thank you, Neil Armstrong

Thank you, Neil Armstrong


Posted By on Aug 25, 2012

When I heard Neil Armstrong had died, my first reaction was to stop walking and reread the text, curse once, and realize I had no more words. He is a hero who lived an amazing life, a long life, and will remain an inspiration as so many past heros have remained. Its *sucks* that we lost his input on our future, but we don’t live forever and he didn’t linger in suffering has so many people do. As I walked on, I did find...

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A Rocket Car Future (for some)

A Rocket Car Future (for some)


Posted By on Feb 28, 2012

Currently I’m attending the Next Generation Sub-Orbital Research (and Education) Conference in Palo Alto, California. I’m staring at all my notes struggling with finding a coherent theme, idea, or even emotion that I can use to tie together my thoughts. I find that I just can’t; this is a conference that simply defies being captured in a straight forward manner. My struggle to find a coherent message comes from half...

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Kepler First Science


Posted By on Jan 4, 2010

This is the morning of Kepler. I’m currently sitting in a the Marriot Ballroom watching the speaker, William J Borucki (NASA/Ames) gear up to announcing planets. This amazing mission has been imaging the same rich stellar field over and over looking for planetary transits: the slight dimming of light from a star that comes from an orbiting planet passing between us and that distance star. After 20 minutes of gearing up, he...

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NASA Tweetup for STS-129: Postscript


Posted By on Nov 29, 2009

It feels like a lifetime has passed since the Shuttle Launch, but I need to finish telling that story before I can move onto something new. That November the shuttle Atlantis launched flawlessly. It is all a mosaic of moments: the shuttle astronauts drove past and waved; we all piled out for a group picture; speakers came and went and media came and went and we listened and we didn’t and we were interviewed and we laughed. I...

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NASA Tweetup for STS-129: Day 2


Posted By on Nov 16, 2009

We’re here. We’re actually here. It is launch day for STS-129, the next to last launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis. We settled into our seats at T-3 hours and holding, waiting for the crew to head out the vehicle and load up and get locked in (a new meaning for load & lock?) It is a fair day here in Cape Canaveral, with partial clouds, 4-5 ft seas, and low wind. Chances of launch are currently 70%, but in this room...

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