Preparing for a trip to Mars…
Dennis the Menace Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Venture Capital: Investors fuel push for poop power Seattle Post-Intelligencer
A new Tukwila company has scored $8 million in financing to turn cow manure and trash into usable energy. Prometheus Energy Co., which has kept a low profile for the past two years, is developing a new technology that transforms the methane gas produced at landfills, cow pastures and coal mines into a substitute for diesel fuel. “What we do is take pollution and turn it into energy,” explained Daniel Clarkson, vice president of government and legal affairs at the startup. “We take waste gases … and through a freezing process turn that into liquid natural gas.”
Moon, Mars may yield info on physiology Seattle Post-Intelligencer
return to the moon and missions to Mars could produce a wealth of information about human physiology, says an aerospace-medical expert scheduled to testify before a presidential commission. Stanley Mohler, professor of aerospace medicine at Wright State University’s medical school, has trained specialists for NASA. He is among scientists, educators and business leaders scheduled to testify Wednesday before the President’s Commission on Moon, Mars and Beyond.
Real rocket scientist to head sci-fi museum Seattle Post-Intelligencer
The veteran NASA engineer who oversaw development of the first Mars rover has been named director of Paul Allen’s Experience Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame. “When they said they were looking for a director, I got very excited,” Donna Shirley said yesterday. “I thought it would be a really fun thing to do.” Shirley, 62, who previously served on the museum’s advisory board, began working on the Mars program at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 1966 and became the first woman to manage a project for NASA, the billion-dollar Mars Exploration Program.
Mars downloaders swamp NASA Web site Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Think of the Library of Congress’s entire print collections – and then some – to get an idea of how much data space enthusiasts have downloaded from NASA’s Web sites this week. Visitors had obtained more than 34.6 terabytes of images, video and other information as of Friday afternoon, the bulk related to the Mars rover Spirit. By some estimates, all the words in every book in the Library of Congress total 20 terabytes.
Bill Nye’s sundial hitches a ride to Mars Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Mars is about to be invaded by three successive spacecraft carrying sophisticated scientific instruments, six-wheeled robotic “rovers” and two sundials from Seattle. The planned landing on Christmas Day of Britain’s Beagle 2 will be followed by two NASA probes, Spirit and Opportunity, which will land on different days in January. The general purpose of the missions is to find evidence of life, or past life. What does a sundial have to do with this and why on Earth would it come from soggy, cloudy Seattle?
Radio Beat: Oct. 30, 1938 — The broadcast that scared a nation Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Radio’s most famous broadcast celebrates — if that’s the right word — its 65th anniversary this Halloween eve, a literal and figurative dramatic presentation that shook the nation from New York to Concrete, Wash. The CBS Radio network’s production of H.G. Wells’ science-fiction novel “The War of the Worlds” aired on Oct. 30, 1938, locally on KIRO and KVI (both were CBS affiliates at the time). The P-I listed the production, part of “Mercury Theater of the Air,” as one of the “best bets.”
The Flaming Lips are kissing the road goodbye for a while Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Tuesday night may be the last chance to see the fabulous Flaming Lips for quite a while. This may be disappointing news for avid fans who love to dress up in outrageous costumes to attend the Flaming Lips’ flamboyant, balloon-filled shows. But while the Lips will be off the road, they won’t be far from reach. An EP titled “Ego Tripping at the Gates of Hell” is due in November, and a DVD will be out shortly thereafter. There’s also a much-delayed movie, “Christmas on Mars,” due in the fall of 2004.
Defender of the dream of colonizing Mars Seattle Post-Intelligencer
As Mars readies for its close-up on Aug. 27, , the Red Planet has already garnered a growing fan base of casual sky watchers eager to see new details during the planet’s closest swing-by in 60,000 years. But as Mars beams steadily brighter in the southeastern sky, it is more than a curiosity for members of the Mars Society. For this eclectic band of scientists and wishful thinkers, it also shines as a beacon of a dream: One day men and women will walk on Mars. And at the nexus of this group, which convened last weekend in Eugene, is an unlikely Pied Piper: University of Washington-trained nuclear engineer Robert Zubrin. He is the spiritual father of the dream of sending humans to Mars the way the late astronomer Carl Sagan was the Mr. Rogers of the cosmic neighborhood.
The Final Frontier: Lynnwood teacher Alex Koerger longs to be in space Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Christa McAuliffe. Those two words are enough to dampen a lot of enthusiasm about sending teachers into space. Especially now, after two more words — “Columbia disaster” — have been added to the country’s mental data bank of space travel. Yet more than 7,300 teachers were willing to be nominated for the new Educator Astronaut Program that NASA is piloting, 17 years after McAuliffe died aboard the space shuttle Challenger. As the program’s Wednesday application deadline approaches, at least 151 teachers from Washington state have been nominated to be an Educator Astronaut.