Astrobee on station

Mission Monday – New robot crew members aboard space station

The ISS recently added a few new crew members. Named Astrobee, the three free-flying, cube-shaped robots are designed to help scientists and engineers develop and test technologies for use in microgravity. These robots are going to assist astronauts with routine chores and give ground controllers additional eyes and ears on

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Plant Habitat-02

Mission Monday – Growing radishes in space

Radishes…it’s what’s for dinner. Well, not quite yet in space anyway. On the International Space Station, NASA is working on a science experiment to grow radishes in a new habitat, the Assessment of Nutritional Value and Growth Parameters of Space-grown plants (Plant Habitat-02). This experiment is trying to cultivate radishes

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20 years of continuous human presence

Mission Monday – International Space Station celebrates 20 years of continuous human presence

If you’re 20 years old or younger, your whole life astronauts have lived continuously aboard the International Space Station (ISS). Orbiting the Earth every 90 minutes at about 17,500 mph (28,000 km/h), you can view the ISS with the naked eye. Now in its 20th year of continuous human presence,

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Voyager spacecraft

Mission Monday – Voyager 1 returns first spacecraft photo of Earth and Moon

On Sept. 5, 1977, Voyager 1 launched on a decades-long mission to study the outer solar system. Less than two weeks later, Voyager 1 achieved its first milestone – capturing the first image taken by a spacecraft to include both the Earth and Moon in the same frame. It’s been

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NASA COVID-19 response oxygen hood

Mission Monday: NASA develops oxygen helmet for COVID-19 patients

In this week’s Mission Monday, we are exploring a recent NASA innovation helping the response to coronavirus (COVID-19). Engineers at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in California have joined a specialized task force in designing and testing a new oxygen hood to treat COVID-19 patients. When thinking of the organizations

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Enterprise free-flight

Mission Monday: First free-flight test of space shuttle Enterprise

Forty-three years ago, on Aug. 12, 1977, Enterprise took the next giant leap in NASA’s space shuttle Approach and Landing Test (ALT) program: free-flight. Earlier that year, Enterprise, NASA’s first space shuttle orbiter, arrived at Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base in California. Following eight captive-carry flights,

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Mission Monday: NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter still circling the red planet 14 years after arrival

In this week’s Mission Monday, we are featuring a NASA mission that has provided scientists with nearly 400 Terabits of data about the red planet. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) has studied the red planet’s atmosphere and terrain from orbit since 2006 and serves as a key data relay station

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First crewed lunar landing

Mission Monday: Two historic landings, seven years apart

On the same date, seven years apart, two historic missions landed on vastly different worlds from our own. These missions were the first of their kind, true pioneering expeditions for the good of all humankind. On July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 touched down on the lunar surface. Just seven years

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ASTP crew portrait

Mission Monday: The first international docking in space

Long before the International Space Station and the Shuttle-Mir flights, there was the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project, a trailblazing mission where American astronauts and Russian cosmonauts worked side by side for the first time. This year, as we celebrate 20 years of continuous human presence on the International Space Station, a

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Mission Monday: Five fast facts about Telstar, the world’s first active communications satellite

58 years ago this week, NASA launched Telstar, the world’s first active communications satellite, into low-Earth orbit. The feat captured imaginations around the globe and sparked a new age of instant worldwide communications. Communication hasn’t always been instantaneous. However, 58 years ago, a beach-ball sized satellite sparked a new era

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