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NASA Tests X3 Ion Thruster for Possible Mars Missions

NASA has been testing propulsion systems for future Mars missions, and they may have found their solution in X3. This type of thruster works by drawing its acceleration power from nearby electric and magnetic fields. As a result, it is safer and much more fuel efficient than other types of propulsion systems. Unfortunately, these types…
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Chinese Space Station Falling to Earth…But Don’t Panic

In only a few weeks, a non-operational Chinese space station is expected to fall to Earth. Known as the Tiangong-1 station, this satellite is not expected to make it to the surface of the planet. Instead, scientists are predicting that it will burn up as it makes its way through the atmosphere. It’s possible that…
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Telesat Announces Plans for a Broadband Satellite Constellation

At the Canadian SmallSat Symposium held in Toronto in mid-February, Telesat LEO vice-president announced that the company was planning to manufacture and launch a satellite constellation. The company hopes to launch 117 satellites into orbit, as part of their own broadband network. Coverage is to be provided from 50 degrees north and south latitude, where…
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Now Everyone Can Monitor Elon Musk’s Roadster and Starman in Orbit

When Elon Musk’s SpaceX launched its Falcon Heavy rocket earlier this month, there was a very unique payload on board: a mannequin driver called Starman sitting in a Tesla Roadster. The vehicle has a massive elliptical orbit; one that is expected to bring the Roadster close to Mars and then back toward Earth. Space and…
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Russian Ship Brings Cargo to the International Space Station

A big part of running the International Space Station (ISS) is delivery equipment. Anytime repairs are needed or new developments are underway, deliveries must be made. This is often done by unmanned space craft. There is a significant amount of coordination involved in sending these ships and docking them safely on the ISS. The most…
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Next Falcon 9 Rocket Launch Delayed by SpaceX

Elon Musk’s SpaceX’s Falcon 9 launch has been delayed again and is now scheduled for no earlier than February 21. This marks the second delay faced by the rocket, both of which were for the completion of additional checks. The Falcon 9 rocket was originally scheduled for launch from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in…
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Is Virgin Galactic Prepared to Take on SpaceX in the Private Space Race?

Virgin CEO Richard Branson has repeatedly expressed an interest in entering the private company space race, developing Virgin Galactic as his answer to Elon Musk’s SpaceX. After witnessing the successful Falcon Heavy rocket launch earlier this month, Branson admitted that he was jealous of Musk’s success, leading many to wonder if the billionaire is considering…
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Recent Activity at the International Space Station

The inhabitants of the international space (ISS) station have daily research goals. NASA provides detailed outlines of their daily activities for interested parties. Large scale projects are often underway at this long-standing space residence. There are also some smaller goals that are just as interesting, however. Space travel can take its toll on the health…
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Opportunity Rover Reaches Huge Milestone: 5,000 Days on Mars

The much loved and long-running Opportunity rover has recently celebrated yet another major milestone; it spent it’s 5,000th day on Mars. Opportunity is a rover the size of a golf cart, which landed on the red planet in January of 2004 for a mission that was supposed to last for just 90 Martian days, or…
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