Designing a "Simple" Nuclear-Fusion Rocket for Quick Trips to Mars

Researchers are developing a new propulsion technology that could reduce the travel time to Mars from eight or nine months to less than three. The secret? Nuclear fusion, of course. » 11/05/13 7:30am 11/05/13 7:30am

NASA is testing the rocket engines that will take us back to the Moon…

This is the J2-X. The liquid-fuel cryogenic rocket engine is the modernized version of the J-2, which NASA used in the late-'60s and early-'70s to thrust humans beyond low Earth orbit. (Click any image below for hi-res.) » 2/14/13 9:40am 2/14/13 9:40am

10 Words You Might Think Came from Science (But Are Really From…

Last week it came to our attention that the phrase "blast off" was coined—not in a purely scientific context, but a science fictional one—by E. E. Smith, an early science fiction author often referred to as "the father of space opera." The term appeared in Smith's 1937 story Galactic Patrol, when one character inquires of… » 10/17/11 10:00am 10/17/11 10:00am

Satellite Goes Down, Buck Rogers Not Reporting In

It looks like the U.S. Navy was able to pull off a real-life game of missile command last night, and successfully shot down our ailing superspy satellite while everyone was busy gawping at the lunar eclipse. Hey, that's exactly how the script for the failed reboot of Buck Rogers began... does that mean we just sent a… » 2/21/08 1:30pm 2/21/08 1:30pm