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Jason's Blog

Human spaceflight, LightSail and other space stories

by Jason Davis

Latest Blog Posts

Let's talk about this whole Moon vs. Mars thing for human spaceflight

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/26 06:01 CST | 29 comments

NASA's current human spaceflight goal is Mars, but the Trump administration could change that to the Moon. Is that a good idea? Here's an in-depth look at the differences in science gain, the arguments for and against a potential commercial market, and whether or not the technological and operational challenges required to reach the Moon apply to Mars.

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Here's what history has to say about when Trump's NASA administrator will take office

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/19 06:04 CST | 4 comments

This Friday, Charles Bolden resigns as NASA administrator after a stint of 2,744 days. Robert Lightfoot, the agency's highest-ranking civil servant, will take over as acting admin. How long will Lightfoot serve? If history serves as a guide, it could be a while.

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Want to build on our LightSail work? Here are some resources to get started

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/13 10:30 CST | 4 comments

The Planetary Society is launching a new webpage showcasing LightSail academic papers, schematics, parts and imagery.

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SpaceX is ready to fly rockets again. An expert talks about the reason a Falcon 9 blew up last year

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/10 06:02 CST | 40 comments

SpaceX says they fixed a problem with the helium pressurization system that destroyed a Falcon 9 rocket last year. The company pushes the boundaries of rocket science, creating an occasional jaw-dropping fireball in the process. But will the risk-reward equation change when SpaceX starts flying astronauts?

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NASA is visiting 8 asteroids in 8 years. Here are 8 things to know about the missions

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/04 04:33 CST | 12 comments

NASA announced two new asteroid missions today named Lucy and Psyche that will fill important gaps in our understanding of how the solar system was formed. Here are eight things to know about the two missions.

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A company you've never heard of plans to build the world's first private space station

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/03 06:00 CST | 9 comments

Axiom Space, a recently formed company headed by former ISS program manager Mike Suffredini, plans to send an astronaut to the ISS in 2019 and connect a large multipurpose habitat there in 2020.

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Spaceflight in 2017, part 1: Earth-centric edition

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/12/29 06:04 CST | 21 comments

Our preview of spaceflight in 2017 starts with highlights of missions and events happening on and around our home planet.

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Review: ‘Rogue One’ is Star Wars comfort food

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/12/22 06:02 CST | 6 comments

In a review of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Jason Davis says you're more likely to enjoy the film if you embrace it as comfort food—a story line that fits into a larger sequence of Star Wars events you already know.

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Future fear, loathing and predjudice: Star Trek VI turns 25

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/12/16 06:00 CST | 3 comments

On the 25th anniversary of Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, Jason Davis says the societal topics the film explores are still relevant today.

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Lunar orbit beckons: NASA’s next four years of human spaceflight

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/12/14 06:00 CST | 10 comments

Our six-part Horizon Goal series concludes with a look at the future of NASA's human spaceflight program. As NASA prepares to set up shop beyond low-Earth orbit for the first time since 1972, are changes coming for the agency's Space Launch System rocket and Orion crew capsule?

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