Post Thumbnail

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...

April 17th 2015 at 7:16am 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

March 24th 2015 at 4:00pm 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

March 24th 2015 at 9:28am 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

March 19th 2015 at 9:07am 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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 ele...

March 18th 2015 at 5:41pm 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

March 8th 2015 at 3:59pm 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

March 7th 2015 at 7:24am 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

February 24th 2015 at 10:33am 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

February 9th 2015 at 8:28pm 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

January 29th 2015 at 8:00am 0 Comments
Post Thumbnail

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...

January 26th 2015 at 1:17am 0 Comments