What Lies Beyond The Edge Of Our Solar System?

Above: What Lies Beyond The Edge Of Our Solar System?

The Voyager space probes have gone further into the unknown than any other spacecraft. With both probes officially in interstellar space, what have we learned?

In 1965, a PhD student figured out that every 176 years the four planets in our solar system align in such a unique way that it is possible to use their gravitational forces to slingshot from one planet to the next.

This insight, that came to fruition using just a slide rule and simple computer programs, became part of an ambitious mission to send two probes and golden records out into space for a grand tour.

Enter: The Voyagers.

The Voyager probes are two obscure looking robots, weighing roughly 800 kilograms with giant arms and big ears, it took 1,500 engineers and scientists to bring these robotic explorers to life.

The Voyagers took some of the first detailed snapshots of planets and moons – revealing Io’s volcanism, close-up details of Saturn’s icy rings, and Neptune’s great dark spot.

After traveling for more than 43 years, clocking in 18 billion kilometers traveled, the Voyagers are taking humanity into the next great beyond: interstellar space.

With the opportunity to visit Uranus and Neptune, the NASA engineers developed a mission within a mission, outfitting the probes with 11 different instruments, redundant systems, and autonomous controls.

Find out more about the Voyager mission, what we’ve learned so far, and the experts behind these remarkable achievements.

The Existence Of White Holes

Above: The Existence Of White Holes.

A black hole is a region of space where so much mass is packed together so densely that it forms what is called a singularity, and nothing can move fast enough to escape its gravitational pull—not even the fastest thing in the universe (we’re talking light) can escape the clutches of a black hole.

And because light can’t escape, no one can really see what is going on inside a black hole. So we end up relying on theories and equations to deduce exactly what is happening at the center of the event horizon.

There are two competing explanations to describe black holes: Einstein’s theory of general relativity and quantum mechanics.

Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity states the mass of a black hole bends spacetime so much that it becomes one single point of infinite density, but according to quantum mechanics there cannot be an infinitely small point.

It can be very very small, but not infinitely so. And this irreconcilable difference is one of the greatest debates in physics, since general relativity is our best description of gravity, while quantum mechanics has been called the most successful theory ever.

But some physicists believe white holes could square these two predictions. Find out more about white holes and how a white hole could reveal what is really happening inside a black hole on this episode of Elements.

How SpaceX’s Starship Will Become The Most Powerful Rocket In The World | Countdown To Launch

Above: How SpaceX’s Starship Will Become The Most Powerful Rocket In The World | Countdown To Launch.

“When SpaceX was founded, its goal was to establish a human colony on Mars, and Starship might be the way to get there…”

In September 2019, Elon Musk unveiled the first iteration of his next-generation vehicle, Starship.

While SpaceX continues to push the limits, this next endeavor might be its most ambitious yet. SpaceX was founded with the intention of one day creating a human colony on Mars, and Elon Musk hopes that Starship and the Super Heavy rocket will be the way to get there.

Starship was built to carry 100 passengers and will serve as the spacecraft to shuttle both people and cargo to Earth’s orbit and beyond.

Starship has its six Raptors, but the real power behind this transportation system comes from the Super Heavy rocket, which has thirty-seven Raptor engines.

In its final form, the Starship and Super Heavy combination will result in the world’s most powerful launch vehicle ever developed, and SpaceX is working fast to bring this super project to life.

Find out more about SpaceX’s latest space transportation and exploration endeavor on this episode of Countdown to Launch.

Pluto Could Be Made A Planet Again, Along With 102 Other Celestial Bodies

Above: Pluto Could Be Made A Planet Again, Along With 102 Other Celestial Bodies.

This proposed new definition of “planets” would bring back Pluto, but would also reclassify over a hundred other celestial bodies, including our moon.

Can We Use Space Lasers To Clean Up Space Junk? The Costs And Challenges Of Cleaning Space Junk

Above: Can We Use Space Lasers To Clean Up Space Junk? The Costs And Challenges Of Cleaning Space Junk.

How do we get rid of space junk? Here is how scientists are planning to zap away debris and get rid of space junk.

Elon Musk: The Story of SpaceX | Humans On Mars By 2030

Above: Elon Musk: The Story of SpaceX | Sending Humans To Mars By 2030.

SpaceX is set to turn the aerospace industry upside down. This isn’t the most amazing thing, because the real achievement is the pure ambition of Elon Musk, the founder of SpaceX.

About Elon Musk: Founder Of SpaceX, Tesla Motors, SolarCity, And PayPal

Elon Reeve Musk (born on June 28, 1971) is a multi-billionaire South African born Canadian and American business tycoon, entrepreneur, engineer, and inventor. Elon Musk is the founder of SpaceX, co-founder of Tesla Motors, co-founder of SolarCity, co-founder of Zip2, and co-founder of PayPal. As of June 2016, he has an estimated net worth of $12.7 billion United States Dollars, ranking him among the 100 wealthiest people in the world.

Elon Musk has stated that the goals of SpaceX, SolarCity, and Tesla Motors revolve around his vision to change the world and humanity. The goals of Elon Musk include reducing global warming through sustainable energy production and consumption (clean renewable energy), and reducing the risk of human extinction by making life multiplanetary by setting up a human colony on the planet Mars. Elon Musk has also envisioned a high speed transportation system known as the Hyperloop. The first Hyperloop would probably be developed in California with the initial goal of connecting San Francisco and Los Angeles in approximately 45 minutes (about as fast as flying in a commercial airline plane) instead of the usual 5 hour average drive by car.

About SpaceX

Space Exploration Technologies Corporation, better known as SpaceX, is an American aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company headquartered in Hawthorne, California, United States of America. SpaceX was founded in 2002 by former PayPal founder and Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk with the goal of creating the technologies to reduce space transportation costs and enable the colonization of the planet Mars. SpaceX has developed the Falcon 1 and Falcon 9 launch vehicles, both designed to be reusable, and the Dragon spacecraft which is flown into orbit by the Falcon 9 launch vehicle to supply the International Space Station (ISS) with cargo.