Another ISS cargo spacecraft, SpaceX’s Cargo Dragon 1, was also retired in 2020, in favor of Cargo

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[ NASA’s First Mars Flyby Set The Stage For Today’s Rovers ]

Some six weeks away from the ‘seven minutes of terror’ that will precede the entry, descent, and landing of NASA’s most ambitious robotic Mars mission ever attempted, it’s worth a look back at what we learned from NASA’s very first Mars flyby which launched some 56 years ago last month.’

NASA’s Mariner 4 spacecraft, launched from Cape Canaveral on November 28, 1964, became the first successful flyby of the red planet, returning the first close up pictures of Mars from space.’But what its 21 crude images relayed to an eager team of scientists back on Earth was that Mars was far different than initially imagined.’And that it bore little resemblance to the planet which up until the late 19th century had been envisioned as brimming with flowing water, perhaps even canals constructed by an intelligent civilization.’

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Publisher: Forbes
Date: 2020-12-31
Author: Bruce Dorminey
Twitter: @forbes
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Many things are taking place:

Year in Review: Mars missions, Lunar Samples, Crew launched from the US, and Starlink

The final flight of Japan’s H-IIB rocket also occurred this year, launching the final flight of the HTV cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station. Another ISS cargo spacecraft, SpaceX’s Cargo Dragon 1, was also retired in 2020, in favor of Cargo Dragon 2 which debuted later in the year.

Other flagship missions launched by SpaceX this year included the company’s first two crewed missions, Demo-2 and Crew-1, as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. These were the first crewed missions to orbit launched from the United States since the retirement of the Space Shuttle in 2011. SpaceX also debuted the Cargo Dragon 2 spacecraft on the CRS-21 mission, following the Cargo Dragon 1 retirement flight on CRS-20. Testing of the Starship launch system also progressed with three atmospheric test flights using the SN5, SN6, and SN8 vehicles.

Publisher: NASASpaceFlight.com
Date: 2020-12-30T22:46:39+00:00
Twitter: @NASASpaceflight
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From JPL’s Mailroom to Mars and Beyond

Bill Allen has thrived as the mechanical systems design lead for three Mars rover missions, but he got his start as a teenager sorting letters for the NASA center.

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Allen was just 17 years old when he first set foot on the grounds of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory to join the mailroom in the summer of 1981. Voyager had recently encountered Saturn, and the Lab was crawling with members of the media.

“It was like walking into a football stadium in the middle of the touchdown. It was electric,” he says. “This is something that doesn’t go on anywhere else in the world, and to be immersed in it with your first footsteps was crazy. That alone was awe-inspiring.”


Publisher: NASA’s Mars Exploration Program
Date: 2020-12-16 05:12:45 UTC
Author: mars nasa gov
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Pictures from space! Our image of the day

Space can be a wondrous place, and we’ve got the pictures to prove it! Take a look at our favorite pictures from space here, and if you’re wondering what happened today in space history don’t miss our On This Day in Space video show here!

Dec. 28, 2020: ‘This crop of radishes on the International Space Station is a welcome sight of green for astronauts living aboard the orbiting lab. NASA astronaut Kate Rubins grew the space veggies in the Plant Habitat-02 as part of an experiment to study how plants grow in space, and how it affects the nutrition and taste of food plants for astronauts.’– Tariq Malik

Publisher: www.msn.com
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Almost Like Being There

Now consider an alternative to astronauts landing on Mars that might be nearly as good’maybe, in the long run, better: astronauts in Mars orbit, operating sophisticated robots and rovers on the planet’s surface, using telepresence to see through the robots’ eyes and feel what they touch.

Telepresence, a currently available (and constantly improving) set of technologies that lets users interact directly, in near-real time, with a remote environment, is one way to explore Mars without having to go there. Eventually, there will be another way: virtual reality, a technology now in its infancy that lets users immerse themselves in imagery or other kinds of data. The ultimate promise of VR is a multi-sensory simulation so convincing that it’s hard to tell it from the real thing.

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Publisher: Air & Space Magazine
Author: Tony Reichhardt
Twitter: @airspacemag
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The Nuclear Energy That Will Send Us to the Moon and Mars


Publisher: Popular Mechanics
Date: 2020-12-21 02:52:00
Twitter: @PopMech
Reference: Visit Source (Read Article)

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Greetings Earthlings: There is no spoon or AI. The data presented above may one day be zapped to another dimension. Just thought you should be aware. Alert, alert. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.