Tag Archive: exploration

This image from Mars has been generating some controversy, mostly because NASA identified the shiny object as “part of the rock” while the rest of us squint and imagine loftier origins.

What’s your take?

130103-coslog-plastic-1215p.photoblog900(photo credit NBCnews.com)

Of course, this follows the last head-scratcher from October…NASA decided this must have been plastic that shook loose from Curiosity itself.

imagesizer(photo credit NBCnews.com)

Gotta wonder how many ‘unusual’ objects the rover isn’t picking up given what a tiny percentage of the surface it can examining.

Best. App. Ever.

Google Earth for space. Solar Walk, available in the iTunes store, lets you explore earth from space, complete with local satellites orbiting our home. No need to book a $20 million ticket when you can visit from the comfort of your iPad.


Hubble‘s a familiar favorite…


Tired of our home planet? Tap on Saturn and zoom over to check out the rings.


Want to preview the app before forking over $4.99? Here’s a demo.



Scratch the dehydrated crap, Dragon delivered real, chocolate/vanilla swirl ice cream to the ISS crewCommander Williams (pictured) shared with the Japanese and Russian astronauts.



The irony of fire-breathing Dragon carrying ice cream in its belly doesn’t take away from the ‘aww’ factor.

Scientific Chicago

The Dragon capsule and rocket Falcon 9 made a successful launch from Cape Canaveral last night. Now the capsule is currently playing the role of “It” in a celestial game of tag, chasing down the International Space Station to deliver cargo.

Since the ISS is constantly in orbit, circling the entire globe in 91.5 minutes, the Dragon capsule has to spend the next few days catching up.

This is good news for stargazers. As the capsule gets closer and closer, you’ll be able to see two specs streak across the early night and pre-dawn sky (you can’t see satellites in the middle of the night because they need to reflect the sun to be seen. If the sun is on the other side of the Earth, we block the rays from hitting the satellite).

If you want to know where and when you can see the ISS or the Dragon…

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Huffington Post has a great slideshow about these top 7 science moments…


1) Archimedes is best known for discovering the Archimedes’ principle, which “states that a body immersed in fluid loses weight equal to the weight of the amount of fluid it displaces.” (University of Hawaii). In other words, Archimedes explained why we weigh less in water.

2) Copernicus, who proposed the very unpopular idea that we revolve around the sun. The catholic church was quite unhappy with his claim that Earth is not, in fact, the center of the universe.

3) Alexander von Humboldt, known as the ‘greatest scientific traveler who ever lived’, pioneered scientific observation techniques when he reported his geographical and ecological findings in South America. Darwin followed in his footsteps.

4) Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier, known as the founder of modern chemistry, discovered elements (such as oxygen and hydrogen) and formulated many of the chemistry laws we follow today. He is why modern chemistry teachers insist on meticulous documentation, measurements, and formulas. Too bad he lost his head in the French Revolution.

5) Ernest Rutherford discovered the atomic nucleus, transmutation of the elements, and is the early 1900’s version of experimental physicist Leonard Hofstadter.

6) Carl Linneaus, dubbed the ‘father of taxonomy’, not only started our classification system of living organisms (think genus, and canine vs. feline) and zoology, but also pissed off the masses by talking about freaky plant sex.

7) Andreas Vesalius, made famous for his precisely detailed drawings of human anatomy. He was so good, in fact, the local judge set Andreas up with a steady supply of corpses from the gallows. Dunno if I’d want to be standing trial in front of that judge.