Aerospace

Boeing predicts almost 1.2 million pilots, technicians needed by 2034

As airlines bolster their fleets to meet the exploding demand for air travel in Asia and other parts of the globe, more than a million new pilots and maintenance personnel will be needed over the next two decades, according to a new forecast from Boeing. The world's largest plane maker estimates that by 2034, there will be a need for 558,000 new commercial airline pilots and 609,000 new maintenance technicians.

NASA Captures EPIC Earth Image

A NASA camera on the Deep Space Climate Observatory satellite has returned its first view of the entire sunlit side of Earth from one million miles away. The primary objective of DSCOVR, a partnership between NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Air Force, is to maintain the nation’s real-time solar wind monitoring capabilities, which are critical to the accuracy and lead time of space weather alerts and forecasts from NOAA.

United Launch Alliance and Ball Aerospace 2015 Student Rocket Launch Takes STEM Education to New Heights

"United Launch Alliance and Ball Aerospace have created a hands-on program that engages and energizes students from kindergarten through graduate school," said Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper. "The STEM fields are critical to the future economy, and the Student Rocket Launch gives tomorrow's rocket scientists and engineers a chance to build the skills they'll need to propel our state and nation into the future."

NASA Book Shows How Space Station Research Offers Benefits for Humanity

A new book from NASA is showing how research aboard the International Space Station helps improve lives on Earth while advancing NASA's ambitious human exploration goals. The book highlights benefits in a number of key areas including human health, disaster relief and education programs to inspire future scientists, engineers and space explorers. The book is available in a pdf version and can be downloaded here.

A jet engine powered by lasers and nuclear explosions?

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has awarded a patent (US 9,068,562) to Boeing engineers and scientists for a laser- and nuclear-driven airplane engine. “A stream of pellets containing nuclear material such as Deutrium or Tritium is fed into a hot-stop within a thruster of the aircraft,” Patent Yogi explains. “Then multiple high powered laser beams are all focused onto the hot-spot. The pellet is instantly vaporized and the high temperature causes a nuclear fusion reaction.

Scientists want early warning system for space weather

The mission, dubbed Carrington L-5, would provide a five-day forecast of space weather. Space weather, like our own, is affected by the sun’s energy. When there are solar eruptions, particles can be hurled into space and at the earth’s magnetic field. That can cause widespread disruptions to satellite and communication networks.

Pluto and pentaquarks boost non-profit science

Critics of the U.S. space agency’s funding weren’t in evidence on Tuesday, but there are people who want research funded by the private sector rather than taxpayers. It’s true that the relatively open-ended efforts at, say, Google – perhaps the nearest current equivalent of the famed Bell Laboratories in their heyday – offer some analogous potential rewards. The Silicon Valley giant spent $10 billion on research and development in 2014. Yet government-funded science goes beyond what companies generally can do.

Sen. Mikulski talks up Pluto mission, pushes for more space funding

Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), one of the biggest cheerleaders for federal funding for the space program, made an appearance Monday at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab to applaud the New Horizons Pluto mission, and of course — to take a few jabs at those opposed to giving more money to NASA. "The U.S. is going to be the first country in the world to reach every planet with a space probe — isn't that fantastic?" Mikulski said at a news conference "We're on the brink of some very, very new science."

NASA's Three-Billion-Mile Journey to Pluto Reaches Historic Encounter

After a decade-long journey through our solar system, New Horizons made its closest approach to Pluto Tuesday, about 7,750 miles above the surface -- roughly the same distance from New York to Mumbai, India – making it the first-ever space mission to explore a world so far from Earth.

It's showtime for Pluto; prepare to be amazed by NASA flyby

On Tuesday, NASA's New Horizons spacecraft will sweep past Pluto and present the previously unexplored world in all its icy glory. It promises to be the biggest planetary unveiling in a quarter-century. The curtain hasn't been pulled back like this since NASA's Voyager 2 shed light on Neptune in 1989.

These are the first 500 companies allowed to fly drones over the US

A precision agriculture firm in Charles City, Iowa. A builder performing roof inspection from Carlisle, Kentucky. A company monitoring explosive charges based in Ijamesville, Maryland. A security firm conducting surveillance over private property in Cottage Grove, Oregon. These are just a handful of the businesses now allowed to fly drones over US soil.

Students to get hands-on training in drone technology

A California-based nonprofit is planning to invest up to $1 million to bring a high-tech learning lab to the Coleman A. Young International Airport, where Detroit students and the public can get hands-on training in the hot field of drone technology. Students from one high school in the Detroit Public Schools district will be able to take classes there, officials said.

Blimps are back: Giant airship goes on sale

In a revival of a technology that fell spectacularly from grace after the explosion of the Hindenburg in 1937, US aerospace firm Lockheed Martin is now taking orders for a giant airship that can carry heavy loads to remote areas. Major building projects in places lacking road or rail could benefit from the modern-day Zeppelin, which the company says offers a cleaner, quieter and cheaper way of transporting large payloads.

US military's hypersonic jet could fly 5 times the speed of sound

The U.S. military is reportedly developing a hypersonic jet plane that could soar at up to five times the speed of sound — faster than a bullet, which generally travels at Mach 2, or twice the speed of sound. The new hypersonic vehicle, which could take flight by 2023, builds upon research from a 2013 test flight of an experimental hypersonic vehicle, the X-51A Waverider, according to Military.com.

K-State Salina offers new drone engineering degree

Kansas State University Salina has added a new bachelor’s degree and a minor in unmanned aircraft systems, starting this fall, according to a report by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International. The new degree is a Bachelor of Science in engineering technology with a UAS option that combines unmanned aircraft technology with coursework in computer science, electronic engineering and mechanical engineering.

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