A Planet In The Dreaded "Rotisserie" Alignment Could Still Support Life

One of the criteria for the habitability of exoplanets is their obliquity—the angle of the axis relative to the orbit around a star. Current thinking holds that the more extreme the tilt, the less likely the possibility of life. But MIT researchers suggest one notable exception: a world completely covered by water. » 12/18/14 10:40am Thursday 10:40am

A Tax On Smartphones Could Help Pay For The Removal Of Space Debris

So far, governments have opted to deal with the problem of space junk by implementing policies to reduce the creation of more debris. But that alone won't cut it — we also need to be removing stuff from orbit. One way to cover the high costs of space junk disposal would be a $1 tax on every GPS chip in a smartphone. » 12/15/14 1:40pm Monday 1:40pm

Decoding Hidden Messages In Those Geeky Spy Satellite Mission Patches

Last year, the National Reconnaissance Office sparked a media frenzy when it released a spy satellite mission patch depicting an Earth-eating octopus. But, that's not even close to the weirdest logos bestowed upon U.S. spy satellites—and space enthusiasts believe they're codes for the secret mission payloads. » 12/15/14 6:20am Monday 6:20am

The Real Story Of Apollo 17... And Why We Never Went Back To The Moon

On December 11, 1972, Apollo 17 touched down on the Moon. This was not only our final Moon landing, but the last time we left Low Earth Orbit. With the successful launch of the Orion capsule, NASA is finally poised to go further again. So it's important to remember how we got to the Moon — and why we stopped going. » 12/12/14 1:44pm 12/12/14 1:44pm