To able to reach the space, we need rockets. Rocket engines work by action and reaction (“To every action, there is always opposed an equal reaction”Notes 1) and push rockets forward simply by expelling their exhaust in the opposite direction at high speed and can therefore work in the vacuum of space. Space rockets are usually enormous in size, because the bigger the rocket is, the more thrust can produce its engine and can carry more weight into the orbit. Here are the 10 tallest rockets ever launched in the history of space exploration.
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In a video published by the European Space Agency on Twitter, retired American astronaut Scott Kelly describes seeing Earth from space for the first time.
Continue reading Astronaut describes seeing Earth from space for the first time
On April 24, 1990, Hubble Space Telescope was launched into low Earth orbit from space shuttle Discovery (STS-31). It orbits the Earth at an altitude of about 350 miles (560 kilometers). For a comparison, the International Space Station (ISS) maintains an orbit with an altitude of between 205 and 270 miles (330 and 435 kilometers). The telescope is 43.5 feet (13.2 meters) long, weighs 24,500 pounds (11,110 kilograms).
Continue reading Hubble Space Telescope Launch
NASA Astronaut Ricky Arnold published an amazing “selfie” from space on his Twitter account saying “An amazing view of our one and only planet”. He took this selfie during the May 16, 2018 spacewalk to perform upgrades on the International Space Station. We can see the Earth, the beautiful blue marble, reflecting on his helmet’s visor.
Continue reading An amazing view of our one and only planet
NASA Astronaut Andrew Jay “Drew” Feustel, who is currently living and working aboard the International Space Station, published a photo on his Twitter account with a replica of the “Moon Landscape” drawing by Holocaust victim Petr Ginz to honor Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom HaShoah). The replica of the painting was first flown in space by Ilan Ramon (June 20, 1954 – February 1, 2003), the first Israeli astronaut for NASA. Ramon has died in the re-entry accident of STS-107, the fatal mission of the Space Shuttle Columbia. Ilan Ramon’s mother and grandmother were Auschwitz survivors, and his grandfather and other family members perished in Nazi death camps.
Continue reading Astronaut Honors Holocaust Remembrance Day from space with “Moon Landscape” drawing by Holocaust victim Petr Ginz
Tiangong-1, China’s falling space station will make an uncontrolled re-entry on late Sunday, April 1, or early Monday, April 2. But, there’s no need to panic: the risk is quite low that people on Earth will be in danger. Since two-thirds of Earth’s surface is covered by water, any remaining debris that doesn’t burn up in the atmosphere has a high chance of falling into an ocean. In fact, in every few years, uncontrolled spacecraft of this size enter the Earth’s atmosphere. For example, the 5,900-kilogram (13,000 lb) NASA-operated orbital observatory Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) decommissioned and re-entered Earth’s atmosphere on 24 September 2011. It ultimately impacted in a remote area of the Pacific Ocean, which is called Point Nemo. Some decommissioned spacecraft has returned so remotely that there was no visual evidence of their fall. So, the headlines of tabloid papers about Tiangong-1 crash are just sensational and click-bait.
There were uncontrolled reentries of even much larger spacecrafts in space exploration history. The biggest uncontrolled entry of a spacecraft was on February 1, 2003: the Space Shuttle Columbia disintegrated upon reentering Earth’s atmosphere, killing all seven crew members.
Continue reading Why You Shouldn’t Worry About the Uncontrolled Reentry of Tiangong-1 – China’s Falling Space Station
A breathtakingly beautiful photo of a historical moment: NASA Astronaut Robert L. Stewart untethered above the Earth during the first Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU) exercise. The photo was taken on February 7, 1984, during the EVA 1 (Extravehicular activity) of STS-41-B, the tenth NASA Space Shuttle mission and the fourth flight of the Space Shuttle Challenger. The total duration of the spacewalk was 5 hours 55 minutes. Bruce McCandless II and Robert L. Stewart tested a nitrogen-propelled, hand-controlled backpack device called the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU). In this EVA, Bruce McCandless II broke the untethered spacewalking record with a distance of 98 meters (320 feet).
Continue reading Astronaut Robert Stewart untethered above the Earth during Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU) Exercise
Today, to celebrate 25th launch anniversary of Tracking and Data Relay Satellite 6 (TDRS-6), the American communications satellite which launched by Space Shuttle Endeavour on January 13, 1993, NASA has published two amazing photos on its twitter account. The American space agency has tweeted that “Happy 25th launch anniversary to TDRS-6, launched on this day in 1993! TDRS-6 is still operational today, well past its intended design life“.
Continue reading 25th launch anniversary of TDRS-6 (Amazing Photos)
John W. Young, the legendary astronaut has died on January 5, 2018, aged 87. During his 42 years of active NASA service, Young flew in six space missions (with seven launches, counting his lunar liftoff), becoming the first astronaut to achieve that number. He was the only person to have piloted, and been commander of, four different classes of spacecraft: Gemini, the Apollo Command/Service Module, the Apollo Lunar Module, and the Space Shuttle (he was the first astronaut to command the Space Shuttle). He was also the ninth person to walk on the Moon as Commander of the Apollo 16 mission in 1972. Young was actually one of only three people to have flown to the Moon twice, others being Jim Lovell and Eugene Cernan.
Continue reading John W. Young, the astronaut who flew 4 different spacecraft, has died
Here are the top ten most beautiful Earth photos taken by the astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) in 2017. Which one is your favorite? Or if your favorite image was not listed here, please leave a comment below. To see all images taken from the International Space Station and published by NASA, visit Space Station Images.
Continue reading Top 10 Most Beautiful Earth Photos Taken From the International Space Station in 2017