NASA Names 27 Asteroids After Black, Hispanic, and Native American Astronauts

NASA Names 27 Asteroids After Black, Hispanic, and Native American Astronauts

NASA has named 27 asteroids in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter after Black, Hispanic, and Native American astronauts to recognize their contributions and inspire a new generation of potential space explorers. Among those honored include Stephanie Wilson, Joan Higginbotham, Ed Dwight Jr., José Hernández, and John Herrington.  

Why this Matters:  NASA, like many American industries, has struggled with diversity — only 18 Black astronauts have gone to space.

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First All-Civilian Private Space Flight to Launch This Year

First All-Civilian Private Space Flight to Launch This Year

On Monday, SpaceX announced that it would launch the first all-civilian crew to space this year, with no training or assistance from NASA or another government agency.  Leading the four-person mission will be billionaire Jared Isaacman, an experienced pilot and CEO of e-commerce company Shift4.

Why this Matters: This publicity stunt is meant to suggest that the goal of space tourism — to bring ordinary citizens to outer space — is nearer than we think.

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One Cool Thing: Baby Yoda In Space

One Cool Thing: Baby Yoda In Space

Baby Yoda is the Crew-1 astronauts' zero gravity indicator pic.twitter.com/XEshbkl1VT — Michael Sheetz (@thesheetztweetz) November 16, 2020 The most famous member of the Space Shuttle crew is an alien TV star!  The new astronaut crew aboard the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft safely docked with the International Space Station late Monday.  Way cool, but all anyone could […]

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Monitoring Animals From the Space Station To Improve Their Conservation

Monitoring Animals From the Space Station To Improve Their Conservation

Using inexpensive tracking technology and a large antenna installed on the International Space Station, a consortium of researchers is hoping to gather a wider range of data than they had using previous tracking technologies, including long migration patterns, allowing them to better understand how climate change and habitat loss impact wildlife. 

Why This Matters:  In addition to better understanding of wildlife migration and threats, the technology could be used for a range of other goals.

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One Far Out Thing: Astronaut Provides Tips on Social Distancing From Space

One Far Out Thing: Astronaut Provides Tips on Social Distancing From Space

The Late Show host Steven Colbert is really going the extra mile to help us improve our social distancing.  To get advice on how to do it well, he sought out an expert — NASA Astronaut Jessica Meir, who has spent the last 200 days on the International Space Station.  She will get to try […]

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