Tag Archives: science

Space Navigation: Looking to the Stars


For centuries mariners have looked to the stars to cross the oceans. Mariners at sea carried instruments such as cross staffs and sextants to determine the position of celestial objects in the sky. When combined with an accurate time reference, … Continue reading

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Three Zones of the Solar System


With the success of the New Horizon’s spacecraft visiting Pluto and the Kuiper Belt, it seemed appropriate to discuss hte major zones of the solar system. The solar system consists of the Sun and the objects bound to it through … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Books Review: “The National Labs”


The National Labs: Science in an American System, 1947-1974. By Peter J. Westwick. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2003, xii, 403 pp. $49.95, ISBN 0-674-00948-7..06 To help win the cold war the United States created a set of research institutions throughout … Continue reading

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Great Picture of the Earth from Saturn


This is very cool. This is a rare image taken on July 19, 2013, the wide-angle camera on NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has captured Saturn’s rings and our planet Earth and a faint hint of the Moon. Note the arrow pointing … Continue reading

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Announcing the Space Policy and History Forum #18


The next Space Policy and History Forum takes place on December 1, 2015, and will feature Michael Meyer, the Mars Exploration Program Scientist at NASA Headquarters, presenting “Astrobiology in Action.” Please note that this forum will be held at the Applied Physics Laboratory, not … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “Junk Science”


Junk Science: How Politicians, Corporations, and Other Hucksters Betray Us. By Dan Agin. New York: Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin’s Press, 2006. I love these type of books because they allow me to feel superior. I and the author, at least … Continue reading

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Boarding the Spaceplane?


I posted this originally to the blog, “Above and Beyond,” on June 15, 2015. I thought I would reprint here. During the administration of President Ronald Reagan, senior government officials began to discuss the possibility of developing an “Orient Express,” … Continue reading

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A Balance Sheet on All of the Landings on Mars


Since the beginning of the space age there have been 17 landings on the surface of Mars, some of which were not successful. Initially the Soviet Union carried out two attempted landings in 1971, Mars 2 and 3, but the … Continue reading

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Recalling the First Vikings on Mars


The 20th of July marked the 39th anniversary of Viking 1’s touch down on Mars after a voyage of nearly one year, followed within a two months by Viking 2. The landings represented the culmination of a series of missions to … Continue reading

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“New Horizons” Reaches Pluto


The “New Horizons” spacecraft is a major NASA program to complete the initial exploration of all of the major bodies of the solar system. It was designed to help understand worlds at the edge of our Solar System by making the … Continue reading

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