Excitement is growing in the scientific community over the landing next month of two rovers on Mars. A team of young scientists and engineers from the space agency NASA has been sharing their excitement with students. The so-called Mars team has staged an event called Marsapalooza in five U.S. cities, and Mike O’Sullivan attended the presentation in Los Angeles.
NASA’s Marsapalooza Program Inspires Students to Learn about Mars, Science in General Voice of America
The disarray in the U.S. space shuttle program after the Columbia disaster has left lawmakers wondering what the future of the country’s manned space program should be. Experts tell Congress that the expensive shuttle fleet and international space station are limiting the possibilities for human space exploration. On the day after China launched its first manned spacecraft, the House of Representatives Science Committee appealed to experts to provide a vision about where U.S. astronauts should go next in the solar system.
Is China Ready for Space Cooperation with US, Russia? Voice of America
China’s first manned space launch raises the question whether it will eventually join the international space station program or participate in other cooperative manned space ventures. Human space flight is no longer the domain of just the United States and Russia, as it was for more than four decades. But now that the world’s most populous nation has finally joined the club, what is the meaning for the future of international space relations?
NASA Upbeat on Space Exploration Voice of America
A NASA official says the coming year should bring some breakthroughs in space exploration as the agency moves beyond the tragedy that claimed the lives of seven astronauts. The unmanned, and possibly manned, flights are planned for this year. Charles Elachi, director of Jet Propulsion Laboratory, NASA’s leading center for planetary research says, while investigators are seeking the cause of Columbia’s failure, NASA continues its quest at space centers like JPL in Pasadena, California.
Water-Eroded Gullies Discovered on Mars Voice of America
Two U.S. spacecraft orbiting Mars have found signs that liquid water can survive on the Red Planet, despite its freezing climate and thin atmosphere. The clues pointing to this are recently discovered gullies apparently eroded by the water.
What is Life Like Aboard the International Space Station? Voice of America
Imagine what it would be like to be stuck inside a small house with two other people for six months. You get to walk outside once, maybe twice, during that stay, and you get only two sets of visitors in between your arrival and your departure. Imagine that and you have some idea of how U.S. Air Force Colonel Carl Walz, Navy Captain Dan Bursch and their commander, Russian Air Force Colonel Yuri Onufrienko, have been living in their close quarters aboard the orbiting International Space Station, also known as space station Alpha. Colonel Walz said the Expedition IV crew has followed the advice of the station’s previous commander. “Frank Culbertson said you have to have a lot of patience and tolerance, and so we’ve tried to practice that. I think we’re better friends now, we know each other a lot better, having been living together for four straight months,” he said. Long duration spaceflight in earth orbit is one thing but what about trips to Mars in the future? Those journeys could take a year and a half, maybe two years. “Habitability-wise, I think we can do it. Most of the challenges are more mental and psychological and I’m sure people have given some thought to the size of the crew they send on an expedition to Mars and I think that’ll be important,” Captain Dan Bursch.