APOD: Pluto Fly Past
We’ve mentioned before how much we love NASA‘s incredible Astronomy Picture of the Day site. It’s one of the first sites we go to every day and it’s always interesting and frequently awe-inspiring. We love the high quality photos from the Hubble Space Telescope, the wide range of images captured by Earth-based observatories and the […]Read More
On This Day: Konstantin Tsiolkovsky
The name most frequently associated with modern rocketry is that of Wernher von Braun (1912-1977), the German rocket scientist who moved to the United States at the end of the Second World War, known to many as ‘the Father of Rocket Science’. And, to be fair, when one considers that his career is more or […]Read More
On This Day: Mariner 2 Was Launched
On this day, in 1962, Mariner 2 was launched by NASA. In December of the same year it flew past Venus, becoming the first space probe to make a successful fly-by encounter with another planet. Designed and built by the famous Jet Propulsion Laboratory at CalTech, the probe carried a variety of scientific instruments designed […]Read More
On This Day: Dr John Dee
We find ourselves in conflicted times – Manichean days, where battle lines are routinely drawn and in all walks of life, it seems, we must choose: are you with us, or agin us? Are you Left or Right? Capitalist or communist? Pro-Europe or Anti-Europe? And nowhere is this seen more starkly than in the relationship […]Read More
It’s a Science Fictional Day
Today is one of those days when the science fictional world spills over into the real world. First of all, today is Asteroid Day, a global event dedicated to increasing the awareness of asteroids and the very real – if statistically small – possibility of one of them impacting the Earth. Asteroid Day is held […]Read More
On This Day: Sir Patrick Moore
On this day in 1923, Patrick Alfred Caldwell-Moore was born in Pinner, Middlesex. He developed an interest in astronomy from an early age, joining the British Astronomical Association at the age of eleven and running his first observatory at the age of fourteen. He joined the Royal Air Force at sixteen, having lied about his […]Read More
Happy Birthday, Rocket Boy!
On this day, in 1943, Homer Hadley Hickam Jr was born. His is probably not a name that will be familiar to a great many of our readers, but we’d argue (politely but firmly) that it should be. Homer H. Hickam, Jr wrote one of the stand-out books of 1998: Rocket Boys. It told the […]Read More
Happy Birthday, Buzz Aldrin!
Having suffered the indignity of overlooking a milestone birthday of one great figure, we have no intention of making it two-for-two so early in the year. As one of the most intellectually limited figures ever to hold high office (in)famously said: ‘Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice . . . I won’t […]Read More
That’s One Small Step for Man . . .
It’s amazing what we can achieve when we direct our resources and imagination towards goals other than the most efficient methods of killing each other and/or extracting every last penny from the economy regardless of the social cost. Forty-five years ago, today, human beings first set foot on another world. Yes, of course, there […]Read More
The Science Fictional World: 16th May
Hey, everyone! It’s May 16th – and you know what that means! Er . . . no? No, nor do we, really, but one of the very interesting things about science fiction is that it is now so culturally all-pervasive and such an integral part of conceptualising the science of the last hundred years or […]Read More