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NASA's top priority is still taking humans to Mars, and it says private companies who want to do the same don't stand a chance without its support. Administrator Charles Bolden told a US House budget committee, "our ultimate focus is the journey to Mars and everything comes back to that," adding t...

1 day ago 0 Comments
April 17, 2015 at 7:16AM
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Mars One promises to send humans on a one-way trip to the red planet, with the intent to colonize, by 2027. Once the first four people leave Earth for Mars, there's no turning back, no panic button, no chance to return home. This aspect of the trip isn't just for drama -- it's a core tenet of Mars...

24 days ago 0 Comments
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NASA's Curiosity rover isn't done finding signs that Mars once had the prime ingredients for life... not by a longshot. The explorer robot has discovered evidence of nitrates, the nitrogen compounds that are some of the key nutrients for life, in rocks at three places near its landing site. This s...

25 days ago 0 Comments
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NASA wants to visit celestial bodies we've never been to before, so it has started testing a precise landing system that will first be used for future trips to Mars. The engineers at Jet Propulsion Laboratory used a rocket by Masten Space Systems called XA-0.1B "Xombie" (a reusable test rocket tha...

1 month ago 0 Comments
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As much as humanity knows about Mars, the planet is still chock-full of surprises. Just ask NASA: University of Colorado researchers using its MAVEN probe have discovered phenomena in the Martian skies that you would never see on Earth. For one, there are auroras that are so energetic (their elect...

1 month ago 0 Comments
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You probably know that Mars hasn't always been so barren, but have you wondered what it was like in its heyday? You almost wouldn't recognize it, according to an international team of scientists. They've used six years of atmospheric monitoring to determine that Mars had enough water to form a big...

1 month ago 0 Comments
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The Curiosity rover's drilling career is in danger. Its robotic arm has been having sporadic short circuits ever since late February. Its issues started on February 27th, when a surge of current shut down the the rover while it was processing some samples. After running a couple of tests, NASA pin...

1 month ago 0 Comments
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It's no secret that scientists want the Curiosity rover to drill into Mars more often. However, it first has to learn how to drill properly -- until now, it was so aggressive that it sometimes broke the rocks it was trying to sample. Thankfully, NASA has a fix. It recently started testing a new dr...

1 month ago 0 Comments
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If you've heard about the Mars One mission, you've probably had one overriding question: what the hell would prompt someone to volunteer for a one-way trip to another planet? Thanks to The Guardian, we now have a clearer answer. The news outlet has just published If I Die on Mars, a documentary th...

2 months ago 0 Comments
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In an effort to help prevent foodborne illnesses and contamination, IBM Research is teaming up with Mars for a safety study that'll examine how supply chains affect what we eat. Specifically, the duo will take a closer look at microorganisms in a safe factory environment to help cut down on the bi...

2 months ago 0 Comments
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Rovers have a tough time getting across Mars' vast, unforgiving landscape. They can't see very far ahead, and the crew back home can only offer so much help by looking at orbital imagery. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory may have a clever solution to that problem, though: an aerial robot scout. It...

2 months ago 0 Comments
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Getting to Mars is never going to be cheap. But a couple of mathematicians have figured out how to shave some significant bucks off the price tag. Rather than fly to the red planet when its orbit brings it closest, the craft will "meet" it on the way. The strategy is called ballistic capture and i...

3 months ago 0 Comments
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Happy holidays, everyone! Welcome to Barely Related, a conversational Friday column that presents the non-gaming news stories that we, the Joystiq staff, have been talking about over the past week. And no, we're not stopping our focus on industry and gaming news. Think of this as your casual wee...

3 months ago 0 Comments
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NASA's Curiosity rover is still going strong on the red planet, observing the atmosphere and analyzing soil samples for the sake of future missions. For instance, the agency has revealed that the rover has sniffed out sudden methane spikes in the atmosphere sometime in late 2013 and early 2014, co...

4 months ago 0 Comments
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Humans have been speculating about water on Mars for hundreds of years, and now thanks to the Curiosity rover we're getting a better sense of how wet the Red Planet used to be. NASA revealed today that the Gale Crater, the 96-mile wide patch of land Curiosity has been exploring since 2012, held a ...

4 months ago 0 Comments
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On December 5th, NASA's Orion capsule successfully lifted off from its platform at Cape Canaveral in Florida, reaching a max altitude of 3,600 miles in outer space. During the four-and-a-half hour test flight, it entered the Van Allen radiation belt, orbited the planet, survived its fiery re-entry...

4 months ago 0 Comments
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This week, enjoy the good things, if you can. Welcome to Barely Related, a conversational Friday column that presents the non-gaming news stories that we, the Joystiq staff, have been talking about over the past week. And no, we're not stopping our focus on industry and gaming news. Think of thi...

4 months ago 0 Comments
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NASA's Orion capsule has blasted off on the farthest journey into space anyone has ever attempted since the last Apollo moon mission. In fact, a Delta IV rocket will propel it to an altitude of 3,600 miles, roughly 14 times that of the International Space Station's -- and for good reason. NASA and...

4 months ago 0 Comments