In July, 1945, Vannevar Bush addressed a report to President Franklin D. Roosevelt arguing that basic research needed to become a priority supported by the federal government. As an engineer, businessman and government administrator, Bush recognized that each of these three worlds--academia, industry and government--plays a vital role in promoting scientific innovation. Crucially, he said, the government’s role should to provide the guiding vision for basic research, seed the related effort and sustain its pool of talent.
NASA hopes to launch the first unpiloted test flight of an SLS rocket and an Orion capsule in 2021, years later than originally planned. While Pence said the Trump administration remains committed to the huge rocket’s development, he warned the government will turn to other providers if NASA’s “traditional” contractors cannot deliver.
An epic lunar laser experiment is still going strong, five decades after the Apollo astronauts set it up on the surface. The moonwalking crew of Apollo 11, which landed on the moon 50 years ago this month, put special retroreflectors on the lunar surface, as did the later crews of Apollo 14 and 15, in 1971.
A half-century after landing the first humans on the Moon, NASA is looking to put people back on the lunar surface, but this time the agency has an even more ambitious deadline to meet. The goal is to send humans back to the Moon by 2024, a mere five years from now. NASA has a whole lot more hardware to develop this time -- which leaves many wondering if such an extremely ambitious lunar return can be done.
In the 1960s, on an 840-acre island at the entrance to Long Island Sound, scientists at the highly guarded Plum Island Animal Disease Center were at the forefront of U.S. biological-weapons research. Specifically, they sought to create pathogens that could be deployed stealthily, via insects.
A half century ago, America's dreams were realized in space. The power of U.S. innovation and spirit brought the Apollo 11 crew to the moon and back. That mission was possible due to a diverse team of engineers, astronauts and mathematicians. It was also possible thanks to the help of one 10-year-old boy who was in the right place at the right time.
Fifty years ago, NASA's Apollo 11 mission carried the first geologic samples from the moon back to Earth -- and agency has finally released footage of researchers examining those lunar samples for signs of life.
Before humanity first set foot on the lunar surface, the moon was an elusive rock in our night sky. Scientists weren't sure how it formed or what it was made of, and there was even a common misconception that the moon's surface would be fluffy. "There was real concern that our lunar landers would sink into the surface because the material was so fluffy...
In an attempt to provide insight into the final moments of the incredible mission, NASA has used imagery captured by its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter to create a simulation of what Armstrong saw. Orbiter images have also been used to recreate Aldrin’s view from the other side of the Lunar Module.
Around 94% of Americans with TVs tuned in on July 20, 1969, to see Apollo 11 touch down. Three years later, Apollo 17 sent Eugene Cernan, Ronald Evans and Harrison Schmitt to the moon, making them the last humans to exit low Earth orbit. This, and NASA's dismantling of the space shuttle program in 2011, has created a "public misconception," Hadfield says, that NASA and the West have slowed down in space.