Saturday, October 16News That Matters
Shadow

Tag: NASA

NASA plans careful restart for Mars helicopter after quiet period

NASA plans careful restart for Mars helicopter after quiet period

Science
Oct. 1 (UPI) -- The Mars helicopter Ingenuity is on its own without NASA's guidance for two weeks as the sun interferes with communications to the Red Planet. Sometime around Oct. 14, NASA plans to check in with the helicopter and the Mars rover Perseverance. Previous rovers have endured so-called solar conjunction communication dropouts, but never has a tiny aircraft sat alone on the planet for so long with no Earthly contact. "Ingenuity is unique, something never tried before," Jaakko Karras, Ingenuity deputy operations lead, told UPI. "It contains all kinds of components and construction methodologies that have no parallel on Mars. We just don't know what will happen during the conjunction, although we're hopeful," Karras said. Potential hazards during conjunction include ...
NASA faces new criticism, possible congressional hearing over spacesuit delays

NASA faces new criticism, possible congressional hearing over spacesuit delays

Science
ORLANDO, Fla., Aug. 23 (UPI) -- NASA is facing new criticism over a recent agency watchdog report that disclosed spacesuit development is so far behind schedule that a return to the moon would be delayed beyond a 2024 target. Coupled with the high cost, estimated to hit $ 1 billion eventually, the development issues are serious enough to prompt a congressional hearing, U.S. Rep. Don Beyer, D-Va., told UPI. "I almost certainly think we have to schedule a hearing before the end of the year," said Beyer, who chairs the House Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee. "We already spent $ 420 million, and we don't know where we're going. We need to really make sure [Congress] is providing the oversight and the accountability necessary." The report from the NASA Office of Inspector Genera...
NASA studies bigger, better Mars helicopter

NASA studies bigger, better Mars helicopter

Science
ORLANDO, Fla., July 15 (UPI) -- As the Mars helicopter Ingenuity breaks interplanetary records and captures the public's attention, NASA is quietly researching a bigger, better Mars chopper to navigate the Red Planet's rough terrain. The next aircraft sent to Mars has no budget, no confirmed design and no launch date, but researchers at NASA and various universities have studied possible destinations for such a mission. "We're trying to look at building on the success of Ingenuity, and what we could accomplish with a larger, more capable aircraft to Mars in terms of the science we could do and the distances we could go," Teddy Tzanetos, a NASA robotics technologist, said in an interview. The new Mars aircraft either would be a larger version of Ingenuity, with two rotors, or a much bigger...
Nasa zeroes in on cause of Hubble’s trouble

Nasa zeroes in on cause of Hubble’s trouble

Science
NASANasa has identified the possible cause of a problem that has stopped the Hubble telescope from being used for astronomy.It's the worst glitch in years to hit the venerated observatory.An onboard computer halted on 13 June, leading to the science instruments being put in "safe mode" - where non-essential systems are shut down.Now the possible origin of the malfunction has been traced, experts will attempt a fix.They will begin switching over to back-up hardware on Thursday, in an effort to get one of the most important scientific tools in history up and running again.Although astronomy observations have been suspended since June, Nasa says the telescope itself and the science instruments are healthy.Hubble delivers stunning 30th birthday pictureHubble telescope's Universe revealed in 3D...
Venus: Nasa announces two new missions

Venus: Nasa announces two new missions

Science
ReutersNasa has announced that it is sending two new missions to Venus in order to examine the planet's atmosphere and geological features. The missions, which have each been awarded $ 500m (£352m) in funding, are due to launch between 2028 and 2030. Nasa administrator Bill Nelson said the missions would offer the "chance to investigate a planet we haven't been to in more than 30 years". The last US probe to visit the planet was the Magellan orbiter in 1990. However, other spacecraft - from Europe and Japan - have orbited the planet since then. The missions were picked following a peer review process and were chosen based on their potential scientific value and the feasibility of their development plans. Reuters"These two sister missions both aim to understand how Venus became an inferno-l...