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Lonely Planet: Worlds Found Wandering Interstellar Space


In 2006, the International Astronomical Union -- the professional organization for astronomers -- put itself through a painful and, for many members, embarrassing exercise: It tried to come up with a scientific definition for "planet," a word that dated from...

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May 18, 2011 in Adventure, Science, Space | Permalink | User Comments (11)

Notes from a Space Shuttle Launch


Good morning from the Kennedy Space Center, where there is expectation in the air. The weather is typical for Florida -- clear, brilliant, with a small chance of drenching thunderstorms. The space shuttle Endeavour fairly glows in pictures from NASA...

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May 16, 2011 in Science, Space, Technology | Permalink | User Comments (1)

'Houston, We've Had a Problem': No Space Shuttle for Museum in Astronauts' Home Town


The space agency giveth, and the space agency taketh away. On Tuesday NASA announced the museums that would get its three surviving space shuttles -- Discovery will go to the Smithsonian outside Washington, Endeavour to the California Science Center in...

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April 13, 2011 in Adventure, Politics, Science, Space | Permalink | User Comments (26)

Spacewalking Astronaut Seen From the Ground


After days of fearsome bulletins, I suppose I needed a mental break from the crises in Japan and Libya, and Thierry Legault provided one. Legault, you may recall, is a French photographer who takes remarkable pictures of spacecraft as they...

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March 22, 2011 in Adventure, Current Affairs, Science, Space, Technology, Travel | Permalink | User Comments (4)

Spring Flooding: 'Almost Half the Country' at Risk


After a rugged winter, the National Weather Service has put out a long-term forecast for a rugged spring as snow melts and rivers swell, especially in the Upper Midwest and parts of the Northeast near New York City. "Almost half...

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March 17, 2011 in Current Affairs, economy, Environment, Science, Travel | Permalink | User Comments (3)

Coming to Your Car Air Conditioner: HFO-1234yf


Turn on your car air conditioner in a few years and it will be different and better, says the Environmental Protection Agency. Today it announced the approval of a new refrigerant, called HFO-1234yf, which it says does not deplete the...

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February 28, 2011 in Current Affairs, economy, Environment, Politics, Science | Permalink | User Comments (9)

Taking Liberty


ATK, the company that made the strap-on solid rocket boosters (SRBs) for the space shuttles, has an idea. If, as the Obama administration suggests, the future in space belongs to private companies launching astronauts, they'll need rockets to get up...

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February 8, 2011 in Current Affairs, economy, Science, Space, Technology | Permalink | User Comments (9)

The No Cussing Club


McKay Hatch was 14 years old when, his father says, he took it upon himself to make the world a more civil place. He started what he called the No Cussing Club, challenging his schoolmates, and ultimately young people elsewhere,...

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February 2, 2011 in Current Affairs, Technology | Permalink | User Comments (7)

Who Owns the Sun? Spanish Woman Lays Claim


If you're in your car late at night, you may happen upon a radio commercial for the "International Star Registry," an Illinois operation that allows you to "name a star" in the sky for a loved one's birthday, Valentine's Day,...

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January 26, 2011 in Adventure, Current Affairs, Science, Space | Permalink | User Comments (40)

Tucson Tragedy: An Astronaut's Burden


The anguish over the Tucson shootings has been felt across the country, and keenly at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. You'll recall that Gabrielle Giffords' husband, Navy Capt. Mark Kelly, is a NASA astronaut. It so happens he's also...

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January 14, 2011 in Current Affairs, Politics, Science, Space, Technology | Permalink | User Comments (3)

 

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