May 25th, 2012
12:33 PM ET

High school freshman wins prize for early pancreatic cancer detection test

Jack Andraka, a 15-year-old high school freshman, is the young man of the hour in the science world.

Last week, he won the $75,000 grand prize at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh for a non-invasive and cheap way to detect pancreatic cancer.

Andraka appeard on CNN's "Early Start" Friday morning. Click here to watch the interview and read more about his prize-winning idea.

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Filed under: Discoveries
First man on moon gives rare interview to ... Australian accountant?
May 25th, 2012
11:22 AM ET

First man on moon gives rare interview to ... Australian accountant?

It was one small interview for astronaut Neil Armstrong ... and one giant scoop for an Australian accountant, of all people.

In the year's most out-of-this-world get, the first man to step foot on the moon sat down with CPA (Certified Practicing Account) Australia's Alex Malley to narrate his historic lunar landing in an extremely rare interview.

Armstrong was the commander of NASA's three-man Apollo 11 mission that landed on the moon on July 20, 1969. Armstrong and fellow astronaut Buzz Aldrin spent about two hours on the surface before returning to the Eagle lunar module.

FULL STORY

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Filed under: In Space
May 25th, 2012
11:19 AM ET

Space station catches 'a Dragon by the tail'

A private spacecraft docked with the International Space Station on Friday, a milestone in a new era of commercial space flight.

The docking happened just before 10 a.m. ET, almost two hours later than planned, when the station's robotic arm captured the unmanned SpaceX Dragon spacecraft.

A radar system aboard the unmanned SpaceX Dragon that measures distance to the station had picked up a different part of the space station, meaning it could not dock properly, NASA said.

"Looks like we caught a Dragon by the tail," astronaut Don Pettit said after capturing the capsule with the robotic arm, according to NASA.

FULL STORY

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Filed under: In Space
SpaceX Dragon triumph: Only the beginning
A mini-space shuttle called Dream Chaser, seen in this illustration, is expected to begin atmospheric testing this year.
May 25th, 2012
06:15 AM ET

SpaceX Dragon triumph: Only the beginning

SpaceX made history Friday as the first private company to successfully reach an orbiting space station - but its competitors aren't far behind.

Blue Origin, the commercial space outfit founded by Amazon.com's Jeff Bezos, has been wind-tunnel testing its Space Vehicle capsule, which is designed to carry up to seven astronauts to the International Space Station, much like SpaceX's Dragon capsule.

Another company, Sierra Nevada, is preparing to dangle a test version of its shuttle-like Dream Chaser from helicopters later this year to find out how well it slips through the air. The sleek spacecraft - which could lift off as soon as 2016 or 2017 - is designed to launch atop a powerful Atlas V rocket and then use its wings to fly back to Earth for a runway landing.

FULL POST

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Filed under: Hardware in Orbit • In Space • News
May 24th, 2012
12:05 PM ET

Enhanced video shows beautiful detail on sun

You know how, as a kid, you were always warned not to look directly at the sun? Thanks to videos like this, you don’t have to.

The entire video, on the NASA website, covers 24 hours of solar activity back on September 25, 2011, in about 2 minutes, 45 seconds.

The colors appear blue and gold because additional processing was added to enhance the details.

There’s no scientific value to the processing, it just looks cool!

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Filed under: the Sun
New German telescope stares at the sun
May 24th, 2012
10:18 AM ET

New German telescope stares at the sun

A consortium of German scientists unveiled this week Europe’s largest solar telescope, which will give mankind its clearest images of the sun to date.

The telescope, given the appropriately Teutonic name Gregor, is a powerful contraption capable of staring directly into the nearby gas giant.

Until now, scientists were unable to point conventional telescopes at the sun for very long without the mirrors overheating and distorting the image.

But Gregor, built from a sturdy lithium aluminosilicate glass-ceramic, employs reflective surfaces made out of silicon carbide, a material that does not warp under the heat of the sun.

In addition, the telescope, located atop a volcano in the Canary Islands, also boasts a completely open structure, allowing cool ocean breezes to pass through it and further reduce its overall temperature.
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Stellar week for SpaceX founder Elon Musk
SpaceX founder Elon Musk
May 23rd, 2012
10:08 AM ET

Stellar week for SpaceX founder Elon Musk

It’s officially a stellar week for Elon Musk, the billionaire engineer behind SpaceX, the company that made history Tuesday launching the first private spacecraft bound for the International Space Station.

The rocket, originally set to hit the stratosphere Saturday, might have taken to the sky a few days late, but the excitement Musk expressed on Twitter about the launch extends a victory streak that also includes more earthly passions.

On Monday, Musk tweeted that Tesla  the luxury electric car company he co-founded in Silicon Valley  had reached a “major milestone” by completing crash testing and gaining approval for sale to the public.

FULL STORY


Filed under: Hardware in Orbit • In Space • News
May 22nd, 2012
01:07 PM ET
Dragon Fire
May 22nd, 2012
09:54 AM ET

Dragon Fire

"The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket soared into space from Space Launch Complex-40 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, carrying the Dragon capsule to orbit at 3:44 a.m. EDT on Tuesday, May 22, 2012. The launch is the company's second demonstration test flight for NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, or COTS, Program. During the flight, there will be a series of check-out procedures to test and prove Dragon's systems, including rendezvous and berthing with the International Space Station. If the capsule performs as planned, the cargo and experiments it is carrying will be transferred to the station."

Source: NASA

Filed under: Light up the screen
May 22nd, 2012
09:35 AM ET

Historic launch of private rocket heralds new era

A new era in space exploration dawned Tuesday as a slender rocket powered into the dark Florida sky before sunrise, carrying the first private spacecraft bound for the International Space Station.

Track Dragon in orbit

"We're now back on the brink of a new future, a future that embraces the innovation the private sector brings to the table," NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said. "The significance of this day cannot be overstated."

The unmanned SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral, Florida at 3:44 a.m., carrying 1,300 pounds of food, clothing and scientific experiments on a demonstration mission to gauge the company's ability to safely and efficiently deliver supplies to astronauts staffing the orbiting station.

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Filed under: In Space • News
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