March 23rd, 2010

UK Space Agency launched in London The Daily Telegraph

The UK Space Agency, as it is officially named, took off with the help of British astronaut Major Timothy Peake.
But the accent at the launch in London was on the dry realities of economics rather than Dan Dare.
Lord Mandelson was on hand to keep proceedings firmly grounded, despite the Science Minister Lord Drayson confessing that he would ”like to see human beings living on Mars”.
The Business Secretary said: ”I think it is important to remember that although it is cutting edge, this stuff is not sci-fi. It may start in space, but it comes down to Earth very quickly and is directly relevant to all our daily lives.”
Britain’s mini-version of NASA will take overall responsibility for UK space activities, replacing the soon-to-be defunct British National Space Centre (BNSC).

December 1st, 2009

NASA: compelling evidence of life on Mars The Daily Telegraph

A research team at Johnson Space Centre in Houston has been re-examining a meteorite that hit Antarctica 13,000 years ago, and found the most compelling evidence yet that the planet once harboured bacterial life.
The team says that microscopic crystals found in the rock are almost certainly fossilised bacteria that have many characteristics in common with bacteria found on Earth.
“The evidence supporting the possibility of past life on Mars has been slowly building up during the past decade,” said David McKay, NASA chief scientist for exploration and astrobiology.
“This evidence includes signs of past surface water including remains of rivers, lakes and possibly oceans and signs of current water near or at the surface.”

May 30th, 2007

‘Life on Mars’ garden wins Chelsea The Daily Telegraph

In the year that BBC One’s 1970s era police show proved such a ratings hit it was perhaps appropriate that an entry nicknamed the “Life on Mars Garden” should win the Chelsea Flower Show. But the Chelsea judges still caused something of a stir when they favoured Sarah Eberle’s garden for an astronaut on Mars over Ulf Nordfjell’s near perfect celebration of the tercentenary of the Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus.
Yet the judges, all professional designers themselves, clearly thought Miss Eberle’s garden was out of this world.
Miss Eberle said she was “overwhelmed” to win her first best in show at Chelsea for “600 days with Bradstone,” the Martian garden that has taken her eight years to research and build, with the help of the European Space Agency.

November 2nd, 2004

Lack of cash blamed for Beagle 2 failure The Daily Telegraph

The loss of Britain’s Beagle 2 project can be traced to the Government wanting a Mars lander “on the cheap”, and tensions with the European Space Agency, MPs said yesterday. Previous reports have highlighted the possible technical reasons for the failure of the

May 23rd, 2004

Beagle 2 mission was doomed long before take-off, claims inquiry The Daily Telegraph

The Beagle 2 mission to Mars was a disaster waiting to happen, according to the official inquiry into the debacle, whose findings will be made public tomorrow. Hailed as Britain’s first probe to another planet, Beagle 2 was supposed to have touched down on the Red Planet on Christmas Day last year and perform experiments to detect signs of alien life. Instead, all contact was lost with the probe just before it was due to land. It is now presumed to have been destroyed on impact.

February 7th, 2004

‘Mouse-tronauts’ to pave way for men on Mars The Daily Telegraph

Space scientists are planning one small step for mice that could mark a giant leap for mankind’s ambition to create colonies on Mars. In the wake of plans by President George W Bush to put a man on Mars, and a rival European effort, a

January 29th, 2004

Nasa accused of painting Mars red The Daily Telegraph

The American space agency NASA has been accused of doctoring its pictures of Mars to make the Martian surface conform to our impression of the famously red planet. Nasa has been accused of digitally “tweaking” drab brown scenery to make it redder. It has even been suggested that Nasa removed green patches to hide evidence of life.

January 29th, 2004

It’s life, but not as we know it The Daily Telegraph

Australian scientists claim to have conclusive proof that unusual microscopic fossils found in a four billion-year-old meteorite from Antarctica are bacterial life from Mars. And in an extraordinary piece of research to be published today, they claim that the find makes it probable that life on Earth first began on Mars.

January 21st, 2004

Mars… a big step for womankind? The Daily Telegraph

When President Bush announced plans to send humans to Mars last week, he talked of weightlessness and radiation as being the key dangers. But there is increasing evidence to show that one of the greatest hazards lies in the crew itself. The hostile space environment and the hardware will, of course, be crucial factors in a Mars mission. But so will the software of our brains. The proposed expedition will require humans to spend longer in close proximity with each other in a confined capsule than ever before. Some psychologists believe an all-female crew would be best suited to such a mission.

December 20th, 2003

Beagle off the leash The Daily Telegraph

Beagle 2, the British probe that will seek out life on Mars, was ejected from its mother ship yesterday and started the final leg of its journey. Shortly after 8.30am, the tiny craft left the European Mars Express and was sent spinning towards the Red Planet. If it survives the descent, the

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