Around 44 years ago, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins were the first men to walk on the moon while riding on Apollo 11. After launching, a huge rocket engine part fell on the ocean floor and sat there untouched for years. The massive rocket engine part has been salvaged from the ocean and it was dug up by a company started by Amazon.com founder and chief executive officer Jeff Bezos.
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The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) was able to test their first rocket engine component made through 3D printing. Yesterday, NASA subjected their new rocket engine injector to a series of several high-pressure fire tests that involves liquid oxygen and gaseous hydrogen. Since the test was successful, NASA was able to prove that additive manufacturing used for 3D printing could help build the next generation of rockets at lower costs.
The NASA Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover will soon become a Lego model. Lego posted three projects to be voted on for the next building blocks model. The three projects included Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover, the UCS Sandcrawler, and Thinking with Portals! Stephen Pakbaz, a mechanical engineer that worked on the Curiosity for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory also designed the 1:20 scale Lego version of the Rover.
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Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has partnered with NASA’s Ames Research Center to study ways that quantum computing can improve science and solve technology problems using machine learning. Google’s Director of Engineering Hartmut Neven said that the new lab is called the ‘Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab.’ The lab will house a quantum computer from D-Wave Systems and the Universities Space Research Association (USRA).
Google has launched a new project called Timelapse where they will take you back in time to see a historical perspective on changes to the Earth’s surface. Google worked with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), NASA, and TIME to released over a quarter-century of images of Earth that was taken from space. These photos were compiled into an an interactive time-lapse map. Google Timelapse was built from millions of satellite images and trillions of pixels. The interactive map can be explored through a zoomable time-lapse map as part of the new Timelapse project by TIME.
NASA has that the SpaceX Dragon capsule will be making its third trip to the International Space Station. The target date is March 1st, 2013 for the launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
At a conference at the Kennedy Space Center, SpaceX said that they are planning to send a crew of their employees into orbit starting in 2015. This is not surprising because SpaceX successfully sent a cargo craft to the International Space Station in October. In late November, SpaceX founder Elon Musk said that he wanted to set up space colonies on Mars and the company tested their Grasshopper vertical flight last month. SpaceX project manager and former NASA astronaut Garrett Reisman made the announcement about the company’s goal at the conference.
NASA and Foursquare has announced a new badge. The badge features a drawing of Curiosity rover that landed on Mars. The red badge will be added to your Foursquare app when you like NASA on Foursquare, “check in” to a planetarium, or “check in” to the NASA visitor center. When getting the badge, you will receive the following message: “Get out your rock-vaporizing laser! You’ve explored your scientific curiosities just like NASA’s Curiosity rover on Mars. Stay curious and keep exploring. You never know what you’ll find.”