People are about to go back to the moon for the first time in 50 years. It isn’t just a race to get there, but a whole new era of lunar exploration and exploitation.
We will shortly see people walking on the moon again, mining precious resources and setting up lasting bases on the dusty, grey world. As NASA prepares to return to the moon, we take a look back at some of the key milestones in our history with our lunar neighbour.
In this episode, Nature reporter Davide Castelvecchi joins us to talk about the big science events to look out for in 2022. We’ll hear about vaccines, multiple Moon missions, the push to save biodiversity, and more.
NASA introduced the space agency’s first planetary defense test mission, the Double Asteroid Redirection Test or DART, a spacecraft they plan to launch later this month on a mission to crash into an asteroid.
The surface of Venus is completely inhospitable for life: barren, dry, crushed under an atmosphere about 90 times the pressure of Earth’s and roasted by temperatures two times hotter than an oven. But was it always that way? Could Venus once have been a twin of Earth — a habitable world with liquid water oceans? This is one of the many mysteries associated with our shrouded sister world. 27 years have passed since NASA’s Magellan mission last orbited Venus. That was NASA’s most recent mission to Earth’s sister planet, and while we have gained significant knowledge of Venus since then, there are still numerous mysteries about the planet that remain unsolved. NASA’s DAVINCI (Deep Atmosphere Venus Investigation of Noble gases, Chemistry, and Imaging) mission hopes to change that. Video credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center
China says its spacecraft has more advanced technology. While the future of the nearly 23-year-old International Space Station remains uncertain after 2024, China says its newly equipped Tiangong station will be up and running by next year. WSJ unpacks the design and technology of both space stations. Photo: CCTV; NASA
NASA is planning two missions to Venus to assess if the now-toxic planet once had an ocean, continents and life. Scientists are beginning the effort on Earth by training sensors and machine learning systems to analyze the building blocks of our own planet. Photo illustration: Laura Kammermann
NASA is partnering with SpaceX, Blue Origin and others to search for water on the moon. Water is the foundation for rocket propellant, which could supply refueling stations in the cosmos and make Mars trips cheaper. Photo illustration: Crystal Tai
Most research on aging has been done on model organisms with limited life spans, such as flies and worms. Host Meagan Cantwell talks to science writer Yao-Hua Law about how long-living social insects—some of which survive for up to 30 years—can provide new insights into aging.
Also in this episode, host Sarah Crespi talks with Noshir Contractor, the Jane S. & William J. White Professor of Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University, about his AAAS session on keeping humans in harmony during long space missions and how mock missions on Earth are being applied to plans for a crewed mission to Mars.