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Issue #13 (September 2016)


Mining the sky

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It is exactly one year since New Horizons hurtled through the Pluto system at 49,600 km/h, after a journey of nearly nine and a half years, its array of scientific instruments gathering precious data on this hitherto mysterious world and its family of moons. We shared in the thrill of the flyby and then watched in …

Prospecting for treasure within the solar system The current cost of space travel, on a price per mass basis, is astronomically high. All puns aside, this is a major economic barrier that must be overcome. If we are to send humans to Mars, or anyplace really, we’re going to have to lower the cost of space travel. Companies …

Earth-mass world spotted in orbit around Proxima Centauri Astronomers using ESO telescopes and other facilities have found clear evidence of a planet orbiting the closest star to Earth, Proxima Centauri. The long-sought world, designated Proxima b, orbits its cool red parent star every 11 days and has a temperature suitable for liquid water to exist …

Upon first hearing the name OSIRIS-REx, a picture of an unknown carnivorous dinosaur may come to mind. But OSIRIS-REx (Origins-Spectral Interpretation-Resource Identification-Security-Regolith Explorer) is actually an acronym that names an upcoming asteroid exploration mission. The spacecraft will travel to an asteroid target in a near-Earth orbit, perform scientific experiments, and become the first U.S. mission that …

Do your best to find these words scattered throughout the 13th issue of RocketSTEM magazine. This article appeared in the 13th issue of RocketSTEM.        

A spacecraft named Juno hopes to unlock more secrets about the largest planet in our solar system, Jupiter, by studying the planet from its core all the way out to its large magnetic field. The mission’s objective is to help us better understand the origins of our solar system by studying how Jupiter formed. Jupiter is …