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Making a List, Checking It Twice
When you're on the moon, trying to fix some broken equipment, you don't want to waste time fumbling around in oversized gloves trying to read the instruction manual. NASA's solution: make the operations checklist electronic, and mount a display inside an astronaut's helmet. Geologist Dean Eppler, who recently tested just such a system (albeit on Earth), says it works pretty well.
SETI and the Cosmic Quarantine Hypothesis
How many technically advanced civilizations exist in our galaxy? With this essay by Steven Soter, Scientist-in-Residence in the Center for Ancient Studies at New York University, Astrobiology Magazine initiates the first in a series of 'Gedanken', or thought, experiments - musings by noted scientists on scientific mysteries in a series of "what if" scenarios.
Weighing the Benefits of the I-suit
Dr. Dean Eppler is a geologist at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. For the past eight years, Eppler has participated in field tests of experimental spacesuits as part of the Desert RATS (Research and Technology Studies) project. The suits are being tested to provide input to the development of flight-ready suits for future human missions to the moon and Mars.
Expectations for a Final Theory?
Astrobiology Magazine caught up with Rees as he ponders the effect of interplanetary travel on human evolution, the origin of life on Earth, and the limits of human intelligence.
Titan: A Moon with Atmosphere
Chris McKay, a planetary research scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, gave a public lecture, sponsored by the Planetary Society, in which he talked about the scientific results of the Cassini-Huygens mission. In this first of four parts, McKay discusses Titan's atmosphere.
Titan Weather: Cloudy Every 15 Years
There is only one moon in our solar system that has clouds, Saturn's giant moon Titan. First discovered by a scientist using an earthbound telescope, the clouds were later confirmed by NASA's Cassini spacecraft. Chris McKay, a planetary scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, recently gave a public lecture, sponsored by the Planetary Society, about what scientists have learned about Titan from the Cassini-Huygens mission. In this, the second part in a four-part series, McKay talks about Titan's mysterious clouds, some of which are thought to appear only briefly every 15 years.
Titan: Greenhouse and Anti-greenhouse
Recently, Chris McKay, a planetary research scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, gave a public lecture, sponsored by the Planetary Society, in which he talked about the scientific results of the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan. In this, the third in a four-part series, McKay explains why Titan's greenhouse effect is unique and how its anti-greenhouse effect works.
Titan's Rocks of Ice
Chris McKay, a planetary scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, recently gave a public lecture, sponsored by the Planetary Society, about what scientists have learned about Titan from the Huygens probe. In this, the final part of a four-part series, McKay talks about the unsolved mystery of Titan's ice rocks.
Samples of the comet Wild 2 will come down to Earth on January 15, 2006. But what kind of shape will they be in? Worries about the sample return capsule's parachutes - and memories of the Genesis mission - add nail-biting drama to the event.
Mars Not So Wet?
A region of Mars that some planetary scientists believe was once a shallow lakebed and likely habitable for life may not have been so wet after all, according to a new University of Colorado at Boulder study.
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