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Jason's Blog

Human spaceflight, LightSail and other space stories

by Jason Davis

Latest Blog Posts

Your hypothetical questions, answered: SpaceX prepares to refly rocket booster

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/03/28 06:00 CDT | 5 comments

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket booster recovered by a drone ship last year will be reflown later this week, marking what could be a new milestone in the quest for affordable spaceflight.

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A repeat of the space shuttle's bold test flight? NASA considers crew aboard first SLS mission

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/03/23 09:37 CDT | 4 comments

NASA has only flown astronauts aboard a rocket's first flight once, when John Young and Bob Crippen took space shuttle Columbia on the boldest test flight in history. What are the risks of repeating the feat for SLS?

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Signed, sealed but not delivered: LightSail 2 awaits ship date

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/03/20 06:00 CDT | 1 comment

Following a pre-ship review at Planetary Society headquarters, LightSail 2 is ready to be integrated with its Prox-1 partner spacecraft. The final shipping schedule, however, has yet to be determined.

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Trump's first budget proposal is out. Here's how NASA fared

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/03/16 07:08 CDT | 16 comments

NASA escaped a large-scale budget slash, and planetary science fared well. ARM is canceled, the Moon-versus-Mars debate is not mentioned, and Earth science stands to lose some missions.

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Cassini, with only a half-year to go at Saturn, just keeps dropping awesome images

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/03/09 11:38 CST | 7 comments

Our latest roundup of Cassini goodies from Saturn includes Pan, a ravioli-shaped moon that orbits inside the planet's ring system.

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This company launches balloons to the edge of space. Will the business float?

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/03/08 06:00 CST

World View, a self-described “stratospheric exploration” company, recently unveiled its new headquarters in Tucson, Arizona.

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SpaceX plans to send tourists around the Moon in 2018. Here's why that may not happen

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/03/03 06:00 CST | 21 comments

Two private citizens are paying SpaceX for a 2018 flight around the Moon. Is that timeline realistic?

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NASA's audacious Europa missions are getting closer to reality

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/02/21 03:43 CST | 10 comments

Today, NASA announced progress on a spacecraft that would assess whether Jupiter's Moon Europa is habitable, and earlier this month, an agency-sponsored science team released a report on a separate lander mission that would directly search for signs of life.

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Everything you need to know about tomorrow's historic SpaceX launch

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/02/17 06:00 CST | 3 comments

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket blasts off from a former space shuttle launch pad tomorrow morning. Here's a rundown of everything you need to know about the historic event.

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Solar sailing in Japan: 10 questions for LightSail engineer Barbara Plante

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/02/13 06:01 CST | 1 comment

Planetary Society CEO Bill Nye and LightSail systems engineer Barbara Plante recently traveled to Japan for a solar sailing symposium. Our Q&A with Plante discusses everything from CubeSat attitude control systems to robotic giraffes in Tokyo.

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