Elon Musk’s SpaceX to have launches reviewed by Pentagon

The Pentagon will review rocket launches by Elon Musk’s SpaceX, it has said. The certification that allows the company to send launch vehicles into …

The Pentagon will review rocket launches by Elon Musk’s SpaceX, it has said.

The certification that allows the company to send launch vehicles into space will be reviewed to check that the US Air Force complied with the requisite guidelines, investigators said in a memo.

“Our objective is to determine whether the U.S. Air Force complied with the Launch Services New Entrant Certification Guide when certifying the launch system design for the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle-class SpaceX Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy launch vehicles,” wrote US Department Of Defense Deputy Inspector General Michael Roark.

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SpaceX successfully launched its first national security space mission for the US in December. One of its rockets carried a military navigation satellite into space from Florida’s Cape Canaveral, marking a major moment for Mr Musk’s company.

The US government hopes that many space missions will eventually be taken over by private companies such as SpaceX and its competitors, with the hope that it could make launches cheaper.

ShapeCreated with Sketch.Nasa’s most stunning pictures of space

Show all 30
leftCreated with Sketch.rightCreated with Sketch.

1/30 Earth from the ISS

From the International Space Station, Expedition 42 Flight Engineer Terry W. Virts took this photograph of the Gulf of Mexico and U.S. Gulf Coast at sunset
Nasa

2/30 Frosty slopes of Mars

This image of an area on the surface of Mars, approximately 1.5 by 3 kilometers in size, shows frosted gullies on a south-facing slope within a crater. The image was taken by Nasa’s HiRISE camera, which is mounted on its Mars Reconaissance Orbiter
Nasa

3/30 Orion Capsule splashes down

The Orion capsule jetted off into space before heading back a few hours later — having proved that it can be used, one day, to carry humans to Mars
Nasa

4/30 The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launch

The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, carrying three new astronauts to the International Space Station. It also took caviar, ready for the satellite’s inhabitants to celebrate the holidays
Nasa

5/30 Yellowstone from space

NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman shared this image of Yellowstone via his twitter account
Nasa

6/30 Black Hole Friday

Nasa celebrated Black Friday by looking into space instead — sharing pictures of black holes
Nasa

7/30 NuSTAR

X-rays stream off the sun in this image showing observations from by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, overlaid on a picture taken by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
Nasa

8/30 Saturn

This near-infrared color image shows a specular reflection, or sunglint, off of a hydrocarbon lake named Kivu Lacus on Saturn’s moon Titan
Nasa

9/30 Worlds Apart

Although Mimas and Pandora, shown here, both orbit Saturn, they are very different moons. Pandora, “small” by moon standards (50 miles or 81 kilometers across) is elongated and irregular in shape. Mimas (246 miles or 396 kilometers across), a “medium-sized” moon, formed into a sphere due to self-gravity imposed by its higher mass
Nasa

10/30 Solar Flare

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun in this image taken 10 September, captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory
Nasa

11/30 Solar Flare

An image from Nasa’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) shows a 200,000 mile long solar filament ripping through the Sun’s corona in September 2013
Nasa

12/30 Cassiopeia A c

A false colour image of Cassiopeia A comprised with data from the Spitzer and Hubble Space Telescopes and the Chandra X-Ray observatory
Nasa

13/30 Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy

An image of the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy seen in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. Regions of space such as this are where new stars are born from a mixture of elements and cosmic dust
Nasa

14/30 Mars Rover Spirit

Nasa’s Mars Rover Spirit took the first picture from Spirit since problems with communications began a week earlier. The image shows the robotic arm extended to the rock called Adirondack
Nasa

15/30 Morning Aurora From the Space Station

Nasa astronaut Scott Kelly captured this photograph of the green lights of the aurora from the International Space Station

16/30 Launch of History – Making STS-41G Mission in 1984

The Space Shuttle Challenger launches from Florida at dawn. On this mission, Kathryn Sullivan became the first U.S. woman to perform a spacewalk and Marc Garneau became the first Canadian in space. The crew of seven was the largest to fly on a spacecraft at that time, and STS-41G was the first flight to include two female astronauts

17/30 A Fresh Perspective on an Extraordinary Cluster of Galaxies

Galaxy clusters are often described by superlatives. After all, they are huge conglomerations of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter and represent the largest structures in the Universe held together by gravity

18/30 Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant

Nasa’s Hubble Space Telescope has unveiled in stunning detail a small section of the Veil Nebula – expanding remains of a massive star that exploded about 8,000 years ago

19/30 Hubble Sees a Galactic Sunflower

The arrangement of the spiral arms in the galaxy Messier 63, seen here in an image from the Nasa Hubble Space Telescope, recall the pattern at the center of a sunflower

20/30 A Hubble Cosmic Couple

The spectacular cosmic pairing of the star Hen 2-427 — more commonly known as WR 124 — and the nebula M1-67 which surrounds it

21/30 Pluto image

Four images from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) were combined with colour data from the Ralph instrument to create this enhanced colour global view of Pluto

22/30 Fresh Crater Near Sirenum Fossae Region of Mars

The HiRISE camera aboard Nasa’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter acquired this closeup image of a “fresh” (on a geological scale, though quite old on a human scale) impact crater in the Sirenum Fossae region of Mars. This impact crater appears relatively recent as it has a sharp rim and well-preserved ejecta

23/30 Earth Observations From Gemini IV in 1965

This photograph of the Florida Straits and Grand Bahama Bank was taken during the Gemini IV mission during orbit no. 19 in 1965. The Gemini IV crew conducted scientific experiments, including photography of Earth’s weather and terrain, for the remainder of their four-day mission following Ed White’s historic spacewalk on June 3

24/30 Nasa Celebrates 50 Years of Spacewalking

For 50 years, NASA has been “suiting up” for spacewalking. In this 1984 photograph of the first untethered spacewalk, NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless is in the midst of the first “field” tryout of a nitrogen-propelled backpack device called the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU)

25/30 Hubble Peers into the Most Crowded Place in the Milky Way

This Nasa Hubble Space Telescope image presents the Arches Cluster, the densest known star cluster in the Milky Way

26/30 An Astronaut’s View from Space

Nasa astronaut Reid Wiseman tweeted this photo from the International Space Station on 2 September 2014

27/30 Giant Landform on Mars

On Mars, we can observe four classes of sandy landforms formed by the wind, or aeolian bedforms: ripples, transverse aeolian ridges, dunes, and what are called “draa”

28/30 Expedition 39 Landing

A sokol suit helmet can be seen against the window of the Soyuz TMA-11M capsule shortly after the spacecraft landed with Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA near the town of Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan

29/30 Jupiter’s Great Red Spot Viewed by Voyager I

30/30 Chandra Observatory Sees a Heart in the Darkness

1/30 Earth from the ISS

From the International Space Station, Expedition 42 Flight Engineer Terry W. Virts took this photograph of the Gulf of Mexico and U.S. Gulf Coast at sunset
Nasa

2/30 Frosty slopes of Mars

This image of an area on the surface of Mars, approximately 1.5 by 3 kilometers in size, shows frosted gullies on a south-facing slope within a crater. The image was taken by Nasa’s HiRISE camera, which is mounted on its Mars Reconaissance Orbiter
Nasa

3/30 Orion Capsule splashes down

The Orion capsule jetted off into space before heading back a few hours later — having proved that it can be used, one day, to carry humans to Mars
Nasa

4/30 The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launch

The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, carrying three new astronauts to the International Space Station. It also took caviar, ready for the satellite’s inhabitants to celebrate the holidays
Nasa

5/30 Yellowstone from space

NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman shared this image of Yellowstone via his twitter account
Nasa

6/30 Black Hole Friday

Nasa celebrated Black Friday by looking into space instead — sharing pictures of black holes
Nasa

7/30 NuSTAR

X-rays stream off the sun in this image showing observations from by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, overlaid on a picture taken by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
Nasa

8/30 Saturn

This near-infrared color image shows a specular reflection, or sunglint, off of a hydrocarbon lake named Kivu Lacus on Saturn’s moon Titan
Nasa

9/30 Worlds Apart

Although Mimas and Pandora, shown here, both orbit Saturn, they are very different moons. Pandora, “small” by moon standards (50 miles or 81 kilometers across) is elongated and irregular in shape. Mimas (246 miles or 396 kilometers across), a “medium-sized” moon, formed into a sphere due to self-gravity imposed by its higher mass
Nasa

10/30 Solar Flare

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun in this image taken 10 September, captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory
Nasa

11/30 Solar Flare

An image from Nasa’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) shows a 200,000 mile long solar filament ripping through the Sun’s corona in September 2013
Nasa

12/30 Cassiopeia A c

A false colour image of Cassiopeia A comprised with data from the Spitzer and Hubble Space Telescopes and the Chandra X-Ray observatory
Nasa

13/30 Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy

An image of the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy seen in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. Regions of space such as this are where new stars are born from a mixture of elements and cosmic dust
Nasa

14/30 Mars Rover Spirit

Nasa’s Mars Rover Spirit took the first picture from Spirit since problems with communications began a week earlier. The image shows the robotic arm extended to the rock called Adirondack
Nasa

15/30 Morning Aurora From the Space Station

Nasa astronaut Scott Kelly captured this photograph of the green lights of the aurora from the International Space Station

16/30 Launch of History – Making STS-41G Mission in 1984

The Space Shuttle Challenger launches from Florida at dawn. On this mission, Kathryn Sullivan became the first U.S. woman to perform a spacewalk and Marc Garneau became the first Canadian in space. The crew of seven was the largest to fly on a spacecraft at that time, and STS-41G was the first flight to include two female astronauts

17/30 A Fresh Perspective on an Extraordinary Cluster of Galaxies

Galaxy clusters are often described by superlatives. After all, they are huge conglomerations of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter and represent the largest structures in the Universe held together by gravity

18/30 Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant

Nasa’s Hubble Space Telescope has unveiled in stunning detail a small section of the Veil Nebula – expanding remains of a massive star that exploded about 8,000 years ago

19/30 Hubble Sees a Galactic Sunflower

The arrangement of the spiral arms in the galaxy Messier 63, seen here in an image from the Nasa Hubble Space Telescope, recall the pattern at the center of a sunflower

20/30 A Hubble Cosmic Couple

The spectacular cosmic pairing of the star Hen 2-427 — more commonly known as WR 124 — and the nebula M1-67 which surrounds it

21/30 Pluto image

Four images from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) were combined with colour data from the Ralph instrument to create this enhanced colour global view of Pluto

22/30 Fresh Crater Near Sirenum Fossae Region of Mars

The HiRISE camera aboard Nasa’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter acquired this closeup image of a “fresh” (on a geological scale, though quite old on a human scale) impact crater in the Sirenum Fossae region of Mars. This impact crater appears relatively recent as it has a sharp rim and well-preserved ejecta

23/30 Earth Observations From Gemini IV in 1965

This photograph of the Florida Straits and Grand Bahama Bank was taken during the Gemini IV mission during orbit no. 19 in 1965. The Gemini IV crew conducted scientific experiments, including photography of Earth’s weather and terrain, for the remainder of their four-day mission following Ed White’s historic spacewalk on June 3

24/30 Nasa Celebrates 50 Years of Spacewalking

For 50 years, NASA has been “suiting up” for spacewalking. In this 1984 photograph of the first untethered spacewalk, NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless is in the midst of the first “field” tryout of a nitrogen-propelled backpack device called the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU)

25/30 Hubble Peers into the Most Crowded Place in the Milky Way

This Nasa Hubble Space Telescope image presents the Arches Cluster, the densest known star cluster in the Milky Way

26/30 An Astronaut’s View from Space

Nasa astronaut Reid Wiseman tweeted this photo from the International Space Station on 2 September 2014

27/30 Giant Landform on Mars

On Mars, we can observe four classes of sandy landforms formed by the wind, or aeolian bedforms: ripples, transverse aeolian ridges, dunes, and what are called “draa”

28/30 Expedition 39 Landing

A sokol suit helmet can be seen against the window of the Soyuz TMA-11M capsule shortly after the spacecraft landed with Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA near the town of Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan

29/30 Jupiter’s Great Red Spot Viewed by Voyager I

30/30 Chandra Observatory Sees a Heart in the Darkness

The review comes at a difficult time for SpaceX, which said last month that it would sack about 10 per cent of its more than 6,000 employees. It said then that it was facing “extraordinarily difficult challenges”.

The memo to SpaceX – which requested to speak to someone familiar with the certification, and said investigations would begin in February – did not say why specifically the new review had been launched, or whether there was any likelihood that the certification itself would be changed.

Related Posts:

Elon Musk reveals price of a ticket to Mars on board SpaceX flights

Moving to Mars could one day cost less than $100,000, according to Elon Musk – and coming back will be free if you don’t like it. The billionaire …

Moving to Mars could one day cost less than $100,000, according to Elon Musk – and coming back will be free if you don’t like it.

The billionaire founder of companies including private space firm SpaceX hopes to one day take private citizens to the red planet, with the hope they might live there.

And a journey will be eventually be relatively cheap, he says, though it depends in part on how many people actually want to go.

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Asked on Twitter about how much the journey will eventually cost, he said that it would be cheap enough that many homeowners could easily relocate to live on Mars instead.

“Very dependent on volume, but I’m confident moving to Mars (return ticket is free) will one day cost less than $500k & maybe even below $100k,” he wrote. “Low enough that most people in advanced economies could sell their home on Earth & move to Mars if they want.”

ShapeCreated with Sketch.Nasa’s most stunning pictures of space

Show all 30
leftCreated with Sketch.rightCreated with Sketch.

1/30 Earth from the ISS

From the International Space Station, Expedition 42 Flight Engineer Terry W. Virts took this photograph of the Gulf of Mexico and U.S. Gulf Coast at sunset
Nasa

2/30 Frosty slopes of Mars

This image of an area on the surface of Mars, approximately 1.5 by 3 kilometers in size, shows frosted gullies on a south-facing slope within a crater. The image was taken by Nasa’s HiRISE camera, which is mounted on its Mars Reconaissance Orbiter
Nasa

3/30 Orion Capsule splashes down

The Orion capsule jetted off into space before heading back a few hours later — having proved that it can be used, one day, to carry humans to Mars
Nasa

4/30 The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launch

The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, carrying three new astronauts to the International Space Station. It also took caviar, ready for the satellite’s inhabitants to celebrate the holidays
Nasa

5/30 Yellowstone from space

NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman shared this image of Yellowstone via his twitter account
Nasa

6/30 Black Hole Friday

Nasa celebrated Black Friday by looking into space instead — sharing pictures of black holes
Nasa

7/30 NuSTAR

X-rays stream off the sun in this image showing observations from by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, overlaid on a picture taken by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
Nasa

8/30 Saturn

This near-infrared color image shows a specular reflection, or sunglint, off of a hydrocarbon lake named Kivu Lacus on Saturn’s moon Titan
Nasa

9/30 Worlds Apart

Although Mimas and Pandora, shown here, both orbit Saturn, they are very different moons. Pandora, “small” by moon standards (50 miles or 81 kilometers across) is elongated and irregular in shape. Mimas (246 miles or 396 kilometers across), a “medium-sized” moon, formed into a sphere due to self-gravity imposed by its higher mass
Nasa

10/30 Solar Flare

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun in this image taken 10 September, captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory
Nasa

11/30 Solar Flare

An image from Nasa’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) shows a 200,000 mile long solar filament ripping through the Sun’s corona in September 2013
Nasa

12/30 Cassiopeia A c

A false colour image of Cassiopeia A comprised with data from the Spitzer and Hubble Space Telescopes and the Chandra X-Ray observatory
Nasa

13/30 Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy

An image of the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy seen in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. Regions of space such as this are where new stars are born from a mixture of elements and cosmic dust
Nasa

14/30 Mars Rover Spirit

Nasa’s Mars Rover Spirit took the first picture from Spirit since problems with communications began a week earlier. The image shows the robotic arm extended to the rock called Adirondack
Nasa

15/30 Morning Aurora From the Space Station

Nasa astronaut Scott Kelly captured this photograph of the green lights of the aurora from the International Space Station

16/30 Launch of History – Making STS-41G Mission in 1984

The Space Shuttle Challenger launches from Florida at dawn. On this mission, Kathryn Sullivan became the first U.S. woman to perform a spacewalk and Marc Garneau became the first Canadian in space. The crew of seven was the largest to fly on a spacecraft at that time, and STS-41G was the first flight to include two female astronauts

17/30 A Fresh Perspective on an Extraordinary Cluster of Galaxies

Galaxy clusters are often described by superlatives. After all, they are huge conglomerations of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter and represent the largest structures in the Universe held together by gravity

18/30 Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant

Nasa’s Hubble Space Telescope has unveiled in stunning detail a small section of the Veil Nebula – expanding remains of a massive star that exploded about 8,000 years ago

19/30 Hubble Sees a Galactic Sunflower

The arrangement of the spiral arms in the galaxy Messier 63, seen here in an image from the Nasa Hubble Space Telescope, recall the pattern at the center of a sunflower

20/30 A Hubble Cosmic Couple

The spectacular cosmic pairing of the star Hen 2-427 — more commonly known as WR 124 — and the nebula M1-67 which surrounds it

21/30 Pluto image

Four images from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) were combined with colour data from the Ralph instrument to create this enhanced colour global view of Pluto

22/30 Fresh Crater Near Sirenum Fossae Region of Mars

The HiRISE camera aboard Nasa’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter acquired this closeup image of a “fresh” (on a geological scale, though quite old on a human scale) impact crater in the Sirenum Fossae region of Mars. This impact crater appears relatively recent as it has a sharp rim and well-preserved ejecta

23/30 Earth Observations From Gemini IV in 1965

This photograph of the Florida Straits and Grand Bahama Bank was taken during the Gemini IV mission during orbit no. 19 in 1965. The Gemini IV crew conducted scientific experiments, including photography of Earth’s weather and terrain, for the remainder of their four-day mission following Ed White’s historic spacewalk on June 3

24/30 Nasa Celebrates 50 Years of Spacewalking

For 50 years, NASA has been “suiting up” for spacewalking. In this 1984 photograph of the first untethered spacewalk, NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless is in the midst of the first “field” tryout of a nitrogen-propelled backpack device called the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU)

25/30 Hubble Peers into the Most Crowded Place in the Milky Way

This Nasa Hubble Space Telescope image presents the Arches Cluster, the densest known star cluster in the Milky Way

26/30 An Astronaut’s View from Space

Nasa astronaut Reid Wiseman tweeted this photo from the International Space Station on 2 September 2014

27/30 Giant Landform on Mars

On Mars, we can observe four classes of sandy landforms formed by the wind, or aeolian bedforms: ripples, transverse aeolian ridges, dunes, and what are called “draa”

28/30 Expedition 39 Landing

A sokol suit helmet can be seen against the window of the Soyuz TMA-11M capsule shortly after the spacecraft landed with Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA near the town of Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan

29/30 Jupiter’s Great Red Spot Viewed by Voyager I

30/30 Chandra Observatory Sees a Heart in the Darkness

1/30 Earth from the ISS

From the International Space Station, Expedition 42 Flight Engineer Terry W. Virts took this photograph of the Gulf of Mexico and U.S. Gulf Coast at sunset
Nasa

2/30 Frosty slopes of Mars

This image of an area on the surface of Mars, approximately 1.5 by 3 kilometers in size, shows frosted gullies on a south-facing slope within a crater. The image was taken by Nasa’s HiRISE camera, which is mounted on its Mars Reconaissance Orbiter
Nasa

3/30 Orion Capsule splashes down

The Orion capsule jetted off into space before heading back a few hours later — having proved that it can be used, one day, to carry humans to Mars
Nasa

4/30 The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launch

The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, carrying three new astronauts to the International Space Station. It also took caviar, ready for the satellite’s inhabitants to celebrate the holidays
Nasa

5/30 Yellowstone from space

NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman shared this image of Yellowstone via his twitter account
Nasa

6/30 Black Hole Friday

Nasa celebrated Black Friday by looking into space instead — sharing pictures of black holes
Nasa

7/30 NuSTAR

X-rays stream off the sun in this image showing observations from by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, overlaid on a picture taken by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
Nasa

8/30 Saturn

This near-infrared color image shows a specular reflection, or sunglint, off of a hydrocarbon lake named Kivu Lacus on Saturn’s moon Titan
Nasa

9/30 Worlds Apart

Although Mimas and Pandora, shown here, both orbit Saturn, they are very different moons. Pandora, “small” by moon standards (50 miles or 81 kilometers across) is elongated and irregular in shape. Mimas (246 miles or 396 kilometers across), a “medium-sized” moon, formed into a sphere due to self-gravity imposed by its higher mass
Nasa

10/30 Solar Flare

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun in this image taken 10 September, captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory
Nasa

11/30 Solar Flare

An image from Nasa’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) shows a 200,000 mile long solar filament ripping through the Sun’s corona in September 2013
Nasa

12/30 Cassiopeia A c

A false colour image of Cassiopeia A comprised with data from the Spitzer and Hubble Space Telescopes and the Chandra X-Ray observatory
Nasa

13/30 Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy

An image of the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy seen in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. Regions of space such as this are where new stars are born from a mixture of elements and cosmic dust
Nasa

14/30 Mars Rover Spirit

Nasa’s Mars Rover Spirit took the first picture from Spirit since problems with communications began a week earlier. The image shows the robotic arm extended to the rock called Adirondack
Nasa

15/30 Morning Aurora From the Space Station

Nasa astronaut Scott Kelly captured this photograph of the green lights of the aurora from the International Space Station

16/30 Launch of History – Making STS-41G Mission in 1984

The Space Shuttle Challenger launches from Florida at dawn. On this mission, Kathryn Sullivan became the first U.S. woman to perform a spacewalk and Marc Garneau became the first Canadian in space. The crew of seven was the largest to fly on a spacecraft at that time, and STS-41G was the first flight to include two female astronauts

17/30 A Fresh Perspective on an Extraordinary Cluster of Galaxies

Galaxy clusters are often described by superlatives. After all, they are huge conglomerations of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter and represent the largest structures in the Universe held together by gravity

18/30 Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant

Nasa’s Hubble Space Telescope has unveiled in stunning detail a small section of the Veil Nebula – expanding remains of a massive star that exploded about 8,000 years ago

19/30 Hubble Sees a Galactic Sunflower

The arrangement of the spiral arms in the galaxy Messier 63, seen here in an image from the Nasa Hubble Space Telescope, recall the pattern at the center of a sunflower

20/30 A Hubble Cosmic Couple

The spectacular cosmic pairing of the star Hen 2-427 — more commonly known as WR 124 — and the nebula M1-67 which surrounds it

21/30 Pluto image

Four images from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) were combined with colour data from the Ralph instrument to create this enhanced colour global view of Pluto

22/30 Fresh Crater Near Sirenum Fossae Region of Mars

The HiRISE camera aboard Nasa’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter acquired this closeup image of a “fresh” (on a geological scale, though quite old on a human scale) impact crater in the Sirenum Fossae region of Mars. This impact crater appears relatively recent as it has a sharp rim and well-preserved ejecta

23/30 Earth Observations From Gemini IV in 1965

This photograph of the Florida Straits and Grand Bahama Bank was taken during the Gemini IV mission during orbit no. 19 in 1965. The Gemini IV crew conducted scientific experiments, including photography of Earth’s weather and terrain, for the remainder of their four-day mission following Ed White’s historic spacewalk on June 3

24/30 Nasa Celebrates 50 Years of Spacewalking

For 50 years, NASA has been “suiting up” for spacewalking. In this 1984 photograph of the first untethered spacewalk, NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless is in the midst of the first “field” tryout of a nitrogen-propelled backpack device called the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU)

25/30 Hubble Peers into the Most Crowded Place in the Milky Way

This Nasa Hubble Space Telescope image presents the Arches Cluster, the densest known star cluster in the Milky Way

26/30 An Astronaut’s View from Space

Nasa astronaut Reid Wiseman tweeted this photo from the International Space Station on 2 September 2014

27/30 Giant Landform on Mars

On Mars, we can observe four classes of sandy landforms formed by the wind, or aeolian bedforms: ripples, transverse aeolian ridges, dunes, and what are called “draa”

28/30 Expedition 39 Landing

A sokol suit helmet can be seen against the window of the Soyuz TMA-11M capsule shortly after the spacecraft landed with Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA near the town of Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan

29/30 Jupiter’s Great Red Spot Viewed by Voyager I

30/30 Chandra Observatory Sees a Heart in the Darkness

Mr Musk hopes that space travellers will eventually make their journey on SpaceX’s starship, a new craft that is going through the testing process.

A number of Twitter users asked the SpaceX boss what the public could do to support its development, apparently in the hope of being allowed to make trips to Mars as soon as possible.

“The goodwill of the public is critical to Starship’s success,” he wrote in one post.

He was then asked how he would ensure the public stayed engaged with the project. He joked that there would probably be some RUDs – rapid unscheduled disassemblies, which is how SpaceX refers to the events other people might call an exposion – but that there would be plenty to get excited about.

“Just planning on keeping the public informed about progress & setbacks,” he wrote about his plans. “Will be some RUDs along the way, but excitement is guaranteed!”

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Victor Glover, One of the Crew of SpaceX’s First Flight to Station

When SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft lifts off on its first operational mission to the International Space Station, NASA astronaut Victor Glover will be …

Elon Musk says we can still go and live on Mars despite scientific paper suggesting it is impossible

Elon Musk wants to go and live on Mars – and he is not going to let new scientific findings stop him. The SpaceX and Tesla founder’s dreams of …

Elon Musk wants to go and live on Mars – and he is not going to let new scientific findings stop him.

The SpaceX and Tesla founder’s dreams of terraforming and colonising Mars appeared to have come crashing to a halt this week, when scientists revealed a detailed study making clear there would not be enough carbon dioxide to create the atmosphere needed for humans.

But Mr Musk has once again denied the findings of qualified experts and suggested that the new paper does not undermine his plan to go and live on the red planet. He is one of the many people to suggest that we need to look to live on Mars – and that to do so we may have to terraform the planet by dropping a thermonuclear weapon onto it.

Nasa’s most stunning pictures of space

1/30 Earth from the ISS

From the International Space Station, Expedition 42 Flight Engineer Terry W. Virts took this photograph of the Gulf of Mexico and U.S. Gulf Coast at sunset
Nasa

2/30 Frosty slopes of Mars

This image of an area on the surface of Mars, approximately 1.5 by 3 kilometers in size, shows frosted gullies on a south-facing slope within a crater. The image was taken by Nasa’s HiRISE camera, which is mounted on its Mars Reconaissance Orbiter
Nasa

3/30 Orion Capsule splashes down

The Orion capsule jetted off into space before heading back a few hours later — having proved that it can be used, one day, to carry humans to Mars
Nasa

4/30 The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launch

The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, carrying three new astronauts to the International Space Station. It also took caviar, ready for the satellite’s inhabitants to celebrate the holidays
Nasa

5/30 Yellowstone from space

NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman shared this image of Yellowstone via his twitter account
Nasa

6/30 Black Hole Friday

Nasa celebrated Black Friday by looking into space instead — sharing pictures of black holes
Nasa

7/30 NuSTAR

X-rays stream off the sun in this image showing observations from by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, overlaid on a picture taken by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
Nasa

8/30 Saturn

This near-infrared color image shows a specular reflection, or sunglint, off of a hydrocarbon lake named Kivu Lacus on Saturn’s moon Titan
Nasa

9/30 Worlds Apart

Although Mimas and Pandora, shown here, both orbit Saturn, they are very different moons. Pandora, “small” by moon standards (50 miles or 81 kilometers across) is elongated and irregular in shape. Mimas (246 miles or 396 kilometers across), a “medium-sized” moon, formed into a sphere due to self-gravity imposed by its higher mass
Nasa

10/30 Solar Flare

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun in this image taken 10 September, captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory
Nasa

11/30 Solar Flare

An image from Nasa’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) shows a 200,000 mile long solar filament ripping through the Sun’s corona in September 2013
Nasa

12/30 Cassiopeia A c

A false colour image of Cassiopeia A comprised with data from the Spitzer and Hubble Space Telescopes and the Chandra X-Ray observatory
Nasa

13/30 Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy

An image of the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy seen in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. Regions of space such as this are where new stars are born from a mixture of elements and cosmic dust
Nasa

14/30 Mars Rover Spirit

Nasa’s Mars Rover Spirit took the first picture from Spirit since problems with communications began a week earlier. The image shows the robotic arm extended to the rock called Adirondack
Nasa

15/30 Morning Aurora From the Space Station

Nasa astronaut Scott Kelly captured this photograph of the green lights of the aurora from the International Space Station

16/30 Launch of History – Making STS-41G Mission in 1984

The Space Shuttle Challenger launches from Florida at dawn. On this mission, Kathryn Sullivan became the first U.S. woman to perform a spacewalk and Marc Garneau became the first Canadian in space. The crew of seven was the largest to fly on a spacecraft at that time, and STS-41G was the first flight to include two female astronauts

17/30 A Fresh Perspective on an Extraordinary Cluster of Galaxies

Galaxy clusters are often described by superlatives. After all, they are huge conglomerations of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter and represent the largest structures in the Universe held together by gravity

18/30 Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant

Nasa’s Hubble Space Telescope has unveiled in stunning detail a small section of the Veil Nebula – expanding remains of a massive star that exploded about 8,000 years ago

19/30 Hubble Sees a Galactic Sunflower

The arrangement of the spiral arms in the galaxy Messier 63, seen here in an image from the Nasa Hubble Space Telescope, recall the pattern at the center of a sunflower

20/30 A Hubble Cosmic Couple

The spectacular cosmic pairing of the star Hen 2-427 — more commonly known as WR 124 — and the nebula M1-67 which surrounds it

21/30 Pluto image

Four images from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) were combined with colour data from the Ralph instrument to create this enhanced colour global view of Pluto

22/30 Fresh Crater Near Sirenum Fossae Region of Mars

The HiRISE camera aboard Nasa’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter acquired this closeup image of a “fresh” (on a geological scale, though quite old on a human scale) impact crater in the Sirenum Fossae region of Mars. This impact crater appears relatively recent as it has a sharp rim and well-preserved ejecta

23/30 Earth Observations From Gemini IV in 1965

This photograph of the Florida Straits and Grand Bahama Bank was taken during the Gemini IV mission during orbit no. 19 in 1965. The Gemini IV crew conducted scientific experiments, including photography of Earth’s weather and terrain, for the remainder of their four-day mission following Ed White’s historic spacewalk on June 3

24/30 Nasa Celebrates 50 Years of Spacewalking

For 50 years, NASA has been “suiting up” for spacewalking. In this 1984 photograph of the first untethered spacewalk, NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless is in the midst of the first “field” tryout of a nitrogen-propelled backpack device called the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU)

25/30 Hubble Peers into the Most Crowded Place in the Milky Way

This Nasa Hubble Space Telescope image presents the Arches Cluster, the densest known star cluster in the Milky Way

26/30 An Astronaut’s View from Space

Nasa astronaut Reid Wiseman tweeted this photo from the International Space Station on 2 September 2014

27/30 Giant Landform on Mars

On Mars, we can observe four classes of sandy landforms formed by the wind, or aeolian bedforms: ripples, transverse aeolian ridges, dunes, and what are called “draa”

28/30 Expedition 39 Landing

A sokol suit helmet can be seen against the window of the Soyuz TMA-11M capsule shortly after the spacecraft landed with Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA near the town of Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan

29/30 Jupiter’s Great Red Spot Viewed by Voyager I

30/30 Chandra Observatory Sees a Heart in the Darkness

1/30 Earth from the ISS

From the International Space Station, Expedition 42 Flight Engineer Terry W. Virts took this photograph of the Gulf of Mexico and U.S. Gulf Coast at sunset
Nasa

2/30 Frosty slopes of Mars

This image of an area on the surface of Mars, approximately 1.5 by 3 kilometers in size, shows frosted gullies on a south-facing slope within a crater. The image was taken by Nasa’s HiRISE camera, which is mounted on its Mars Reconaissance Orbiter
Nasa

3/30 Orion Capsule splashes down

The Orion capsule jetted off into space before heading back a few hours later — having proved that it can be used, one day, to carry humans to Mars
Nasa

4/30 The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launch

The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, carrying three new astronauts to the International Space Station. It also took caviar, ready for the satellite’s inhabitants to celebrate the holidays
Nasa

5/30 Yellowstone from space

NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman shared this image of Yellowstone via his twitter account
Nasa

6/30 Black Hole Friday

Nasa celebrated Black Friday by looking into space instead — sharing pictures of black holes
Nasa

7/30 NuSTAR

X-rays stream off the sun in this image showing observations from by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, overlaid on a picture taken by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
Nasa

8/30 Saturn

This near-infrared color image shows a specular reflection, or sunglint, off of a hydrocarbon lake named Kivu Lacus on Saturn’s moon Titan
Nasa

9/30 Worlds Apart

Although Mimas and Pandora, shown here, both orbit Saturn, they are very different moons. Pandora, “small” by moon standards (50 miles or 81 kilometers across) is elongated and irregular in shape. Mimas (246 miles or 396 kilometers across), a “medium-sized” moon, formed into a sphere due to self-gravity imposed by its higher mass
Nasa

10/30 Solar Flare

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun in this image taken 10 September, captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory
Nasa

11/30 Solar Flare

An image from Nasa’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) shows a 200,000 mile long solar filament ripping through the Sun’s corona in September 2013
Nasa

12/30 Cassiopeia A c

A false colour image of Cassiopeia A comprised with data from the Spitzer and Hubble Space Telescopes and the Chandra X-Ray observatory
Nasa

13/30 Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy

An image of the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy seen in infrared light by the Herschel Space Observatory. Regions of space such as this are where new stars are born from a mixture of elements and cosmic dust
Nasa

14/30 Mars Rover Spirit

Nasa’s Mars Rover Spirit took the first picture from Spirit since problems with communications began a week earlier. The image shows the robotic arm extended to the rock called Adirondack
Nasa

15/30 Morning Aurora From the Space Station

Nasa astronaut Scott Kelly captured this photograph of the green lights of the aurora from the International Space Station

16/30 Launch of History – Making STS-41G Mission in 1984

The Space Shuttle Challenger launches from Florida at dawn. On this mission, Kathryn Sullivan became the first U.S. woman to perform a spacewalk and Marc Garneau became the first Canadian in space. The crew of seven was the largest to fly on a spacecraft at that time, and STS-41G was the first flight to include two female astronauts

17/30 A Fresh Perspective on an Extraordinary Cluster of Galaxies

Galaxy clusters are often described by superlatives. After all, they are huge conglomerations of galaxies, hot gas, and dark matter and represent the largest structures in the Universe held together by gravity

18/30 Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant

Nasa’s Hubble Space Telescope has unveiled in stunning detail a small section of the Veil Nebula – expanding remains of a massive star that exploded about 8,000 years ago

19/30 Hubble Sees a Galactic Sunflower

The arrangement of the spiral arms in the galaxy Messier 63, seen here in an image from the Nasa Hubble Space Telescope, recall the pattern at the center of a sunflower

20/30 A Hubble Cosmic Couple

The spectacular cosmic pairing of the star Hen 2-427 — more commonly known as WR 124 — and the nebula M1-67 which surrounds it

21/30 Pluto image

Four images from New Horizons’ Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) were combined with colour data from the Ralph instrument to create this enhanced colour global view of Pluto

22/30 Fresh Crater Near Sirenum Fossae Region of Mars

The HiRISE camera aboard Nasa’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter acquired this closeup image of a “fresh” (on a geological scale, though quite old on a human scale) impact crater in the Sirenum Fossae region of Mars. This impact crater appears relatively recent as it has a sharp rim and well-preserved ejecta

23/30 Earth Observations From Gemini IV in 1965

This photograph of the Florida Straits and Grand Bahama Bank was taken during the Gemini IV mission during orbit no. 19 in 1965. The Gemini IV crew conducted scientific experiments, including photography of Earth’s weather and terrain, for the remainder of their four-day mission following Ed White’s historic spacewalk on June 3

24/30 Nasa Celebrates 50 Years of Spacewalking

For 50 years, NASA has been “suiting up” for spacewalking. In this 1984 photograph of the first untethered spacewalk, NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless is in the midst of the first “field” tryout of a nitrogen-propelled backpack device called the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU)

25/30 Hubble Peers into the Most Crowded Place in the Milky Way

This Nasa Hubble Space Telescope image presents the Arches Cluster, the densest known star cluster in the Milky Way

26/30 An Astronaut’s View from Space

Nasa astronaut Reid Wiseman tweeted this photo from the International Space Station on 2 September 2014

27/30 Giant Landform on Mars

On Mars, we can observe four classes of sandy landforms formed by the wind, or aeolian bedforms: ripples, transverse aeolian ridges, dunes, and what are called “draa”

28/30 Expedition 39 Landing

A sokol suit helmet can be seen against the window of the Soyuz TMA-11M capsule shortly after the spacecraft landed with Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos, and Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA near the town of Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan

29/30 Jupiter’s Great Red Spot Viewed by Voyager I

30/30 Chandra Observatory Sees a Heart in the Darkness

The new paper, published in Nature Astronomy, looked to find whether there was enough carbon dioxide in the various pockets that have been identified on Mars to terraform the planet and give it a new atmosphere that could support us. It found that there was far from enough – only a fiftieth of what is needed, and would only be able to raise the surface temperature by less than 10 degrees Celsius, the authors wrote.

But Mr Musk said that the findings of the study were wrong and that there was more carbon dioxide waiting on Mars than the researchers had realised.

“There’s a massive amount of CO2 on Mars adsorbed into soil that’d be released upon heating,” Mr Musk wrote. “With enough energy via artificial or natural (sun) fusion, you can terraform almost any large, rocky body.”

After being questioned over that claim, Mr Musk linked to a 1993 research paper that explored the possibilities of creating an Earth-like environment on Mars. Someone claiming to be an author on that paper then joined the conversation, to suggest that Mr Musk is right and that Mars could still be terraformed using carbon dioxide from the soil.

Scientists expect to learn much more about the soil, water and carbon dioxide on Mars in coming years, as yet more spacecraft head to the red planet.

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