Why America may be gone from the ISS sooner than you think

Image Credit: NASA

Costing NASA a whopping $4 billion a year just to keep it operational, the International Space Station is certainly no cheap endeavor for the government of the United States. Since the launch of its first module in November of 1998, the ISS has been an icon of human exploration. However, with the launch of its new Artemis Program, designed to get humans back on the lunar surface, NASA plans to stop their funding for the ISS.

Over the 20 years that astronauts have continously occupied the space station there have been a vast number of scientific experiments conducted there. Over…

The plane that brought America into the Space Age

Image Credit: NASA

On August 27, 1939 the first jet engine plane was flown by German test pilot Erich Warsitz. While the technology was available during the Second World War, it was not mass produced, so there were very few non-propeller aircraft on either side. Shortly after the war ended and companies stopped manufacturing goods specifically for troops, there were some advances to the jet engine.

Test pilots from around the country flocked to Edwards Air Force Base in Southern California to try out the new aircraft being developed by the military. …

Why SpaceX’s new technology is way ahead of its time

Image Credit: SpaceX

With a possible six different types, the reusable Starship rocket designed by SpaceX may be one of the most complicated pieces of machinery ever built, and a successor to the American Space Shuttle.

Starship is scheduled to make its first launch in 2023. There have already been a few successful test flights for Starhopper, an aircraft made to model the Starship. The Starhopper’s test on August 27, 2019 reached a maximum height of 150 meters (about 500 ft.), and autonomously returned to the ground without incident.

Granted, a 57 second…

Why asteroid mining may be more feasible than most people think

Photo by Bryan Goff on Unsplash

Mining on Earth is a difficult process. It requires large and heavy equipment to dig up the ground to find just a few fragments of a precious gem. Additonally, mining is taking away the natural environments of many species of animals. Mining here on Earth also causes climate change and deforestation, so why do we do it?

Mining companies exist because when they do find something, it is incredibly valuable. …

Why electric planes sound great, but aren’t very practical, at least for right now.

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Recently, there has been some news circulating the development and testing of a new type of transportation: an electric plane. There have already been many electric planes manufactured that have worked and been able to fly reliably across somewhat long distances. The problem is that they are slow, really slow.

An airplane called the Solar Impulse 2 with solar panels on its wings can fly continuously using nothing but solar power and advanced aerodynamics. The drawback is its lack of sheer power, moving at an average…

Image Credit: AeroMobil

For years, people have been wondering when the general public will have access to flying cars. Even now, these magical machines that combine air and ground travel are in development all across the globe. Since the early 20th century, people have been trying to build flying cars - so why don’t we have them now?

The problem with a machine that both flies and drives is that to make it safe enough to be on the road where it may be in an accident, the car portion must be heavier than the maximum takeoff weight of the plane portion, meaning…

A detailed look at the tools and technology needed to create a self-sustaining colony on the red planet

It’s human nature to always be looking ahead at what’s next. The minute Neil Armstrong took his historic first steps on the moon, scientists and civilians alike were already turning towards Mars, and wondering how we could go about landing humans there.

The Set-Up of a Colony

For there to be any well-working colony on Mars, there must be extensive research done ahead of time. Scientists and engineers need to determine the optimal locations of future landing sites and how to effectively transport crew and cargo to the Martian surface safely. …

What melting ice means for humanity as a whole

Photo by Sam Wiggle on Unsplash

This past summer, wildfires were everywhere in the Arctic. One of the reasons why these fires were so prevalent this year was due to the temperatures being so high and the winds so fierce. Because of the higher than average temperatures this year, Greenland’s ice and glaciers are quickly melting as well.

The size and intensity of the wildfires located in the Arctic in June was greater than any other time since the European Union’s Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring System started tracking wildfires in the Arctic, which was 16 years ago.

How Do the Fires Start?

The wildfires in the Arctic are most commonly started by…

A success and failure at the same time

The American Space Shuttle is arguably the most complex flying machine of all time. While it was revolutionary at the time of its initial design, many people believe it to have cost many more dollars and lives that it bargained for.

The Components of the Shuttle

The entire mechanism at launch is known as the Space Shuttle, but the spaceplane part of it is the Space Shuttle orbiter. Attached to the orbiter are two Solid Rocket Boosters, (SRB) and an external fuel tank.

The SRBs would be used to get the orbiter and fuel tank off the ground and increase their velocity, but after about…

Planets are formed when a dense cloud of dust and gas spins around a newly formed star. Over time, gravity causes the bits of matter to clump together and eventually form into planets. Scientists believe that they have discovered a reason why this process tends to take a while. This hindrance is known as the bouncing barrier. Scientists have recently observed that particles over 1 millimeter in size tend to bounce off each other more than they tend to combine with one another, meaning that the forming of planets is slowed.

As time passes, particles will begin to overcome the…

Leo Ferguson

Student, Storyteller, and Space Enthusiast

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