Check out beautiful footage from 35 of the most visually stunning space movies in this video collage edited by Max Shishkin. The piece combines the soundtrack of Interstellar to the narration of Anthony Hopkins and includes footage from space epics like Gravity, Aliens, and 2001: A Space Odyssey.
NASA’s new space pod Orion is scheduled to fly to orbit on an unmanned test flight tomorrow at 7:05 EST from Cape Canaveral, Florda, and you can watch the action live on NASA TV here. The space capsule is designed to take astronauts deep in to space and will pave the way for future manned missions to Mars. 4.5 hours after its initial launch it will be recovered from the Pacific Ocean, along with an odd array of cargo which includes a Star Trek action figure, a Marvel challenge coin, a dinosaur fossil, and a Muppet….which when combined seem suspiciously like a mad scientist’s idea of a good fun.
Redditor Heaney555 has compiled this chart of every vehicle involved in the history of human spaceflight. The chart provides an illuminating sense of the scale of the various spacecraft built to help us explore the cosmos; if you zoom in close enough you can see tiny astronauts drawn to provide perspective on the sheer size of these things.
The full-size image can be found here.
DirkLoechel–who is apparently either unemployed or has the world’s greatest job because he has far too much free time on his hands–put together this elaborate chart of nearly every science fiction starship ever, to scale. It excludes some of the exceptionally large starships like the Death Star because he “had to draw the line somewhere”.
Check out the full-size chart on his Deviant Art page, found here.
Whiskey producer Ardbeg is about to wrap up a little known experience that began in 2011 when the company partnered with US based space research group NanoRacks to mature their whiskey in the micro-gravity environment of space. The space-whiskey has been orbiting the planet at 17,227 miles per hour for the last 3 years and is about to make its way back to solid ground on September 12th, 2014, when
some lucky SOBs a team of “researchers” will begin studying the affects of micro-gravity on the maturation process.
According to the company, “It will be the team’s task to proceed to unlock the mysteries of maturation, through the study of the interaction between Ardbeg-crafted molecules and charred oak.” I’m officially setting up a petition to be on that team. I know all about mysteries. And maturation. Just check out the growing boil on my face. I’m not sure why it’s there. That, is a mystery.
Astronauts on the International Space Station are using social media to share beautiful photos of Earth from their unparalleled 220-mile altitude view since they apparently have a lot of free time on their hands. The Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS) in Nova Scotia, Canada has developed a program that organizes their twitter photo posts on to a single interactive map.
The map can pinpoint where their photos were taken over Earth so we land-locked folk can easily find our favorite landmarks, though they haven’t quite gotten around to your mom’s house yet. Follow astronauts Alex Gerst and Reid Wiseman and “cosmonauts” Макс Сураев and Oleg Artemyev as they photo-tweet their way around the globe. Check out the map here.
Astronomers have just added another line to our comic address in the form of a newly identified supercluster Laniakea. Most galaxies are arranged in groups and clusters, with groups containing dozens of galaxies and clusters comprised of several thousand. 3-10 clusters form even larger structures called superclusters that can span hundreds of millions of light-years across. Our newly-defined supercluster spans 500 million light-years and contains the mass of 100 quadrillion suns in 100,000 galaxies. Laniakea is the Hawaiian term for “Immense Heaven”, but I would have added a bit more pizzaz like the term for “Immense Bad-Asses Live Here”.
NASA plans to bring a 3D printer to space for the first time this month and its not the $125,000 “pizza printer” they’ve invested in [I’ll take one of those]. The printer is scheduled to blast off on a mission to the International Space Station on September 19, and NASA hopes the technology will pave the way for long-term exploration missions by effectively making them more efficient and cost-effective. 3D printers can create material objects by layering plastic, metal, and other material using a technique called extrusion additive manufacturing.
Astronaut Reid Wiseman recently posted this Vine of
trillions of lightning bugs an Aurora captured FROM SPACE. Auroras occur when high energy particles are ejected from the sun, get caught in Earth’s magnetic field, and emit light when their ions are absorbed by other elements at the poles; this is why there are simultaneous auroras in both hemispheres (Aurora Borealis and Aurora Australis).