Astronomers have long known that our solar system came of age during a violent time in our universe, but even they seem to have underestimated just how violent. Two NASA probes have just produced an extremely high definition "gravity map" of the Moon, and it reveals that the lunar crust was once torn to shreds by impacts.
Ever since we were putting goldfish bowls on our heads as kids (oh come on, you know you did that) we've dreamed about the joy of strapping on our very own space helmet and blasting off. And even if none of us can be astronauts, we'll always have the movies, as this awesome space helmet supercut reminds us.
Two years ago, the President of the United States made it clear that a return to the Moon was not a priority for American space flight, but it seems he may have forgotten to tell NASA. American astronauts are apparently planning to head back to the Moon less than 10 years from now. At least, that's what the European Space Agency says.
Though the Cold War was mostly a decades-long superpower standoff, there were a few hotter moments. There was the launching of Sputnik, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the time the U.S. planned to detonate a nuke on the Moon in hopes of scaring the Soviets into defeat. No, really.
Earlier this year , we heard some exciting chatter about a NASA plan to build a space station on the far side of the moon. Now it seems that, though they won't confirm it, the space agency is moving closer to making that a reality, if only temporarily.
With all the attention out there on Mars, and the fancy new Curiosity rover rolling around the Red Planet, it's easy to forget humanity's original fascination with outer space—the Moon.
Yesterday we heard that Russia's planning to put their first man on the moon by 2030, something a lot of people see as a real long shot given the state of their space program. Well, it turns out they don't just want a moonshot by 2030. They want much, much more.
These days Russia's space program is mostly known as the only way we can get to and from the International Space Station, but the nation that came in second in the Space Race of the '60s may be about to change that. According to a leaked document from Russian space agency Roskosmos, they're finally going to the moon.
The bright side to not knowing what exactly will come out of NASA next is hearing about all the ambitious ideas they're generating over there right now. Sure, some of them might never see the light of day, but that doesn't make them any less cool. Take this idea, in which the space agency could use a certain gravitational quirk on the far side of the moon to park a long-term space presence there.
When you're one of the hottest new sci-fi directors around and Christopher Nolan asks if you want to direct the new Superman movie he's producing, what do you say No, of course.