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Our journalists and guest bloggers bring you stunning imagery and the space stories that matter most.

Europe Bypasses Solar System for Upcoming Science Missions

Van Kane • November 06, 2013 • 3

The European Space Agency has selected two astrophysics observatories as its next large science missions, overlooking every proposed planetary mission. ESA's current selection of planetary missions, however, means it will still be a major player in solar system exploration for the next two decades.

Mars Needs Plutonium! (And so do Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Points Beyond)

Mat Kaplan • October 29, 2013

Society Advocacy and Outreach Coordinator Casey Dreier visits Planetary Radio with the tale of an element that is essential to exploration of deep space.

Origami Nanosats: The Future of Space Telescopes?

Casey Dreier • October 01, 2013 • 1

We interview Dr. Franck Marchis from the SETI Institute about nanosats that can unfold in space to create sensitive telescopes that are orders of magnitudes cheaper than current hardware.

The "Starship Century" Beckons

Mat Kaplan • October 01, 2013

The Benford brothers provide inspiration and hard fact in their excellent new anthology about interstellar travel.

Plutonium-238 is Crucial for Space Exploration – and it's Running Out

Casey Dreier • September 20, 2013 • 3

Plutonium-238 provides electricity to deep space missions, but NASA only has a little bit left. A new article in Wired highlights the disastrous consequences of no plutonium for use in space, something the Planetary Society is currently fighting for in Washington, D.C.

Dream Chaser mini-shuttle prepares for free flight tests

Jason Davis • August 15, 2013 • 4

Sierra Nevada Corporation's Dream Chaser spacecraft recently completed a series of range and taxi tow tests, which pave the way for free flights that could begin this fall.

Back to the Future With NIAC Program Exec Jay Falker

Mat Kaplan • August 13, 2013

This week's Planetary Radio talks with the head of the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts Program about its mission and 12 newly-funded projects that could change the world.

J-2X: A Distant Dot Lights Up the Night

Jason Davis • July 18, 2013 • 3

On Tuesday, NASA released new high-definition video of a June 26 nighttime J-2X engine test at Stennis Space Center in southern Mississippi.

In-flight entertainment: cameras aboard the Space Launch System

Jason Davis • July 09, 2013 • 1

When the Space Launch System lifts off on its inaugural flight in 2017, eight engineering cameras will collect crucial in-flight data while providing breathtaking views for the public.

Deflecting the flames of a monster rocket

Jason Davis • July 01, 2013 • 3

Work continues to prepare Kennedy Space Center's launch pad 39B for the Space Launch System, as a flame trench deflector originally built for the Space Shuttle is removed.

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