Author Archives: lindenmuthadam

Public and private solutions to space exploration

I firmly believe that for space exploration to grow by leaps and bounds, there has to be economic incentives for entrepreneurs to create companies that explore the universe. Governmental agencies can do incredible things, but they are often held back by politics and budgetary shortfalls. Thankfully we are at the forefront of this change from […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Not faster than light, but still incredible

The use of ion thrusters (literally using ionized electrons and protons as a source of thrust!) in space has been floated around as a method for interstellar propulsion in science fiction for decades, yet was not a reality until the turn of the millennium. Scientists at the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio developed […] Continue reading Continue reading

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What is the true mission of NASA?

Ted Cruz has drawn both criticism and support in recent weeks for his declaration that NASA should be focused on the tangible goals of space exploration rather than their recent endeavors into earth science and climate change. Some see his arguments as longing for the inspirational spirit of NASA’s classic Apollo missions, but others see […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Io being squeezed

We all know that Jupiter exerts tremendous tidal squeezing on Io, but we need images to truly grasp the magnitude of this force. This image shows Io spewing a 200 mile high volcanic plume! For reference, that is greater than the distance from Nashville to Knoxville! It is baffling to think that tidal squeezing alone […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Our Place in the Universe

When Carl Sagan requested that NASA redirect its Voyager 1 camera towards Earth from the edge of the Solar System, he knew that it would be of little scientific value. The image taken, “Pale Blue Dot” proved to be one of the most iconic and powerful space photographs ever taken. The sheer magnitude of space […] Continue reading Continue reading

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When in Polynesia…sail as the Polynesians do

Old traditions have come back to life in Polynesia, and you can take part. Tucked deep within the Cook Islands is an adventure-travel service that will teach you how to navigate the seas with nothing more than the celestial bodies above. The boat you will travel on is equipped with one of the coolest ancient […] Continue reading Continue reading

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USA reliant on Russian rockets

Recently top officials in NASA and the military have brought to the forefront the unpleasant reality that the USA is only capable of launching small-to-medium size rockets into space with our own rockets. We rely on Russian-built rockets to launch heavy satellites, as well as shuttle astronauts to the ISS. Given the recent geopolitical climate, […] Continue reading Continue reading

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The world orbiting around Kepler

Johannes Kepler was extremely important to astronomy because he first decribed the laws that govern orbital motion, still in use today. It is because of his laws that we are able to predict planetary orbits, fly satellites, and do a host of incredible feats. His work set the stage for later astronomers like Newton and […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Tennessee will be treated to a total eclipse in 2017

Due to the constant nature of the laws of physics, scientists can predict future eclipses with remarkable accuracy. These events are caused by the moon partially or (more rarely) totally obscuring the Sun’s path to the Earth. During solar eclipses we are able to see the Sun’s outermost halo, called the corona, which is usually […] Continue reading Continue reading

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The scale of supermassive black holes is mind boggling!

Crazy black hole video! They say learning about astronomy is a great way to feel insignificant, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the study of supermassive black holes. The amount of matter contained within these beasts is impossible to comprehend without visual aids. The black hole in the center of the Phoenix cluster […] Continue reading Continue reading

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