NASA’s Phoenix Mars Lander could get a mission extension. Managers are asking for 30 more Martian days of funding to continue digging in search of evidence of water and possibly life. As the article mentions, the rovers Spirit and Opportunity are still chugging around four years after landing. That won’t happen with Phoenix, but another 30 days of science would be awesome.
A planned Canadian satellite could search for Near Earth Objects (small asteroids, etc.) as well as U.S. and Canadian artificial satellites. To do both jobs, a new attitude control and tracking system will have to be developed and tested.
Space shuttle Atlantis’ launch date, originally scheduled for Oct.8, could be accelerated by four days.
Virgin Galactic unveiled its new mothership, WhiteKnightTwo, to the public on Monday. A large number of test flights, at least 40 according to Burt Rutan, will be necessary before the craft is used to launch passengers aboard SpaceShipTwo 65 miles above the Earth’s surface. When I have the money…
The International Astronomical Union continues to work on language and definitions describing bodies in our solar system. Planets, dwarf planets, plutoids and major planets are on the latest list. This is science folks: topics are under constant observation and change. It part of what makes science so fun.