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North Korea Seen Expanding Rocket Launch Facility It Once Promised To Dismantle

By Geoff Brumfiel
Satellite imagery shows new roads under construction at North Korea

Satellite imagery shared exclusively with NPR suggests that North Korea is moving ahead with plans to expand its capabilities.

(Image credit: Planet Labs Inc./MIIS)

  • March 27th 2020 at 21:21

David Biello: A Journey Into Uncharted Territory

David Biello

There's so much we've yet to explore—from outer space to the deep ocean to our own brains. This hour, Manoush goes on a journey through those uncharted places, led by TED Science Curator David Biello.

(Image credit: Elizabeth Zeeuw / TED)

  • March 27th 2020 at 13:54

Retired Apollo 15 Astronaut Al Worden Dies At 88

By Russell Lewis
Astronaut Al Worden circled the moon during the Apollo 15 mission.

He had one trip to the moon — not to tread the surface, but to orbit in the craft that would return the two moonwalkers to Earth. All three got in trouble later over the sale of space mementos.

(Image credit: NASA)

  • March 18th 2020 at 18:41

A Spy Agency's Challenge: How To Sort A Million Photos A Day

By Greg Myre
View Of Satellite In Space.

The Earth's entire land mass is being photographed by satellites every single day. Trying to make sense of all these images falls to a U.S. spy agency many have never heard of.

(Image credit: Jose Luis Stephens / EyeEm / Getty Images/EyeEm)

  • March 12th 2020 at 16:00

SpaceX Successfully Lands 50th Rocket In 5 Years

By Lynsey Jeffery
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying more than 4,300 pounds of science and research, crew supplies and vehicle hardware to the International Space Station launches from pad 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. This is the final flight of SpaceX

The commercial rocket company sent its "Dragon" capsule from Cape Canaveral to the International Space Station on Friday for its 20th resupply mission. It's due to arrive at the space station Monday.

(Image credit: SOPA Images/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Gett)

  • March 7th 2020 at 20:19

The Next Mars Rover Will Not Be Named Rovey McRoveface

On Thursday, NASA is going to announce the name of the next Mars rover — selected from a pool of nine names generated through a nationwide naming contest.

  • March 4th 2020 at 22:19

'Black In Space' Explores NASA's Small Steps And Giant Leaps Toward Equality

By Michel Martin
A new documentary centers on Edward Dwight, the first African American selected as a potential astronaut in 1963 for Aerospace Research Pilot School.

A new documentary looks at America's struggle to send its first black astronaut into space. "It would've been fantastic if we saw Ed Dwight walking on the moon," says black astronaut Robert Satcher.

(Image credit: Bettmann Archive/Getty)

  • March 2nd 2020 at 03:09

Katherine Johnson, NASA Mathematician And An Inspiration For 'Hidden Figures,' Dies

By Russell Lewis
NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson, pictured at the 2017 Academy Awards, was one of the women profiled in the book and film Hidden Figures. She died Monday at 101.

Johnson was one of NASA's human "computers" and wrote trajectory equations for missions in the space agency's early days. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015.

(Image credit: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

  • February 24th 2020 at 16:22

Daredevil 'Mad' Mike Hughes Killed In Crash Of Homemade Rocket

By James Doubek
"Mad" Mike Hughes

Mike Hughes promoted himself as believing that the Earth was flat. He launched homemade rockets with the goal of eventually flying to the edge of space to see for himself.

(Image credit: Mercedes Blackehart/AP)

  • February 24th 2020 at 00:49

Spoiler Alert: Star War Ends With Big One Gulping Its Neighbor, Exploding

By Lulu Garcia-Navarro

This week the ALMA telescope in Chile presented the aftermath of the incredible cosmic confrontation: a spectacular celestial cloud.

  • February 9th 2020 at 14:01

Goodbye To The Spitzer Telescope, A Hard-Working Stellar Time Machine

By Scott Simon

George Helou who worked on the space telescope during its 16-year lifespan, tells NPR's Scott Simon what scientists learned from the images it captured.

  • February 8th 2020 at 14:03

NASA Calls For Reviews Of Boeing Spacecraft After Software Bugs Plague Test Flight

By Geoff Brumfiel

A NASA investigation of Boeing's newest space capsule has found numerous software bugs that the agency says should have been found in internal testing — and not an unmanned space flight.

  • February 7th 2020 at 22:25

A Moon Landing In 2024? NASA Says It'll Happen; Others Say: No Way

By Nell Greenfieldboyce
An artist

The Trump administration keeps repeating that the U.S. will return humans to the moon in 2024. That may be technically possible, but only if the money appears and if everything goes perfectly.

(Image credit: Courtesy of NASA)

  • February 7th 2020 at 11:01

A New Form Of Northern Lights Discovered In Finland โ€“ By Amateur Sky Watchers

By Laurel Wamsley
The auroral dunes appear as green waves in the sky.

It was the members of a Facebook group who noted that the auroras they'd seen didn't look like any that had been previously catalogued. So physicists asked them to take a few carefully timed photos.

(Image credit: Kari Saari/University of Helsinki)

  • January 30th 2020 at 23:13

Space Traffic Is Surging, And Critics Worry There Could Be A Crash

By Geoff Brumfiel
SpaceX has launched dozens of satellites as part of its Starlink project to bring high-speed Internet to every point on the planet.

As private companies race into orbit, some experts in satellite operations say there isn't enough public infrastructure to keep all the satellites safe.

(Image credit: SpaceX)

  • January 29th 2020 at 16:11

Imagery Suggests Iran Is Preparing To Try To Launch A Satellite

By Geoff Brumfiel
A satellite image taken Sunday shows vehicles on the circular launch pad at the Imam Khomeini Space Center in northern Iran.

Activity at the Imam Khomeini Space Center indicates Iran is once again attempting to send a satellite into orbit. Last year, three attempts ended in failure.

(Image credit: Planet/MIIS)

  • January 27th 2020 at 19:12

Astronauts Finish Spacewalk For Final Fix Of International Space Station Device

By David Welna
This photo provided by NASA shows the view from NASA

Two astronauts aboard the International Space Station made their fourth foray outside the spacecraft to prolong the lifespan of a cosmic ray detector.

(Image credit: AP)

  • January 25th 2020 at 17:21

Can Space Traffic Control Handle The Volume Of Private Launches?

By Geoff Brumfiel

SpaceX is launching more of its a mega-constellation of satellites on Friday to provide Internet all over the world, but some are worried the world's space traffic management isn't up to the task.

  • January 23rd 2020 at 11:02

SpaceX Celebrates Test Of Crew Dragon Capsule That Will Carry NASA Astronauts

By Wynne Davis
SpaceX successfully tested the emergency escape system of its Crew Dragon capsule on Sunday. The capsule is designed to carry astronauts to the International Space Station for NASA.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and SpaceX's Elon Musk called the test of the Crew Dragon capsule a success. NASA hopes to use the capsule to bring astronauts to the International Space Station.

(Image credit: John Raoux/AP)

  • January 19th 2020 at 21:16

Scientists Sent Mighty Mice To Space To Improve Treatments Back On Earth

By Jon Hamilton
The mouse on the right has been engineered to have four times the muscle mass of a normal lab mouse.

Forty mice spent more than a month in orbit to test two approaches to strengthening muscle and bone in microgravity conditions. The results could help people with muscle and bone diseases.

(Image credit: Se-Jin Lee/PLOS One)

  • January 16th 2020 at 11:06
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