Category Archives: Science

Cassini Arrives at Saturn: Happy Anniversary!


Representing the international character of many NASA planetary missions since Voyager, Cassini-Huygens, a joint effort of NASA, the European Space Agency, and Italian Space Agency, has also proved to be an incredible success. It seems appropriate to recall this mission … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “A Tragic Legacy: How a Good vs. Evil Mentality Destroyed the Bush Presidency”


A Tragic Legacy: How a Good vs. Evil Mentality Destroyed the Bush Presidency. By Glenn Greenwald. New York: Crown Publishers, 2007. Reporter Glenn Greenwald’s thesis is straightforward: George W. Bush approached every issue he faced as one on which the … Continue reading

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Planetary Protection: Announcing a New National Academies Study


The National Academies has just published the interim report, “The Goals, Rationales, and Definition of Planetary Protection.” It makes for really interesting reading. You may find a downloadable copy here.

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “Intimate Universality”


Intimate Universality: Local and Global Themes in the History of Climate and Weather. Edited by James Rodger Fleming, Vladimir Jankovic, and Deborah R. Coen. Sagamore Beach: MA: Science History Publications, 2006. Although nearly a decade old now, Intimate Universality is a … Continue reading

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An Intimate Past?


A debate has been taking place among historians for many years about the nature of the past and perceptions of it, both by historians and by the larger public. Some have insisted that it is, and I find this term … Continue reading

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Robotic Emissaries to the Stars


Five spacecraft from Earth are currently moving out into the stars. After their operations cease, these spacecraft will continue to coast indefinitely. None of them will come close to any known stars, and it is unlikely they will encounter any … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “The Gravity Well: America’s Next, Greatest Mission”


The Gravity Well: America’s Next, Greatest Mission. By Stephen Sandford with Jay Heinrichs. Pacific Grove, CA: Gavia Books, 2016. Appendices, acknowledgments, index. 304 pages. ISBN: 978-0-9962422-9-5. Hardcover with dustjacket $24.95 USD. I have been reading books such as The Gravity … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “A Vision of Modern Science”


A Vision of Modern Science: John Tyndall and the Role of the Scientist in Victorian Culture. By Ursula DeYoung. (Palgrave Studies in the History of Science and Technology.) 280 pp., illus., bibl., index. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011. $85 (cloth). … Continue reading

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Chronology of Key Space Anniversaries for 2017


1942—75 Years Ago 3 October—Germany launched its V-2 rocket and is the first spacecraft to cross the Kármán line (100 km). 1947—70 Years Ago 20 February—The United States sent fruit flies into space. 1952—65 Years Ago 1 April—The U.S. Army … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “Soviet Robots in the Solar System: Mission Technologies and Discoveries”


Soviet Robots in the Solar System: Mission Technologies and Discoveries. By Wesley T. Huntress Jr. and Mikhail Ya. Marov. Chichester, UK: Springer Praxis, 2011. Paperback, 467 pp., illustrations, ISBN 978-1-4419-7897-4. $44.95. It seems hard to believe now, but once there … Continue reading

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