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Space


Analysis and insight on advances in space exploration and technology. Stay updated as Singularity Hub discusses the most important space trends.

What Would It Take to Build a Tower as High as Outer Space?

The human desire to create ever bigger and more impressive structures is insatiable. The pyramids of Ancient Egypt, the Great Wall of China, and the Burj Khalifa in Dubai—now the tallest edifice in the...

Five Reasons to Forget Mars for Now and Return to the Moon

Hopes of colonizing Mars rest on the premise that we could terraform the red planet, making it habitable for humans with a breathable atmosphere and clement temperatures. However, a recent study cast doubt on...

We Discovered That Life May Be Billions of Times More Common in the Multiverse

Why is there life in our universe? The existence of galaxies, stars, planets, and ultimately life seem to depend on a small number of finely tuned fundamental physical constants. Had the laws of physics...

How We Discovered 840 Minor Planets Beyond Neptune—and What They Can Tell Us

Our solar system is a tiny but wonderfully familiar corner of the vast, dark universe—we have even been able to land spacecraft on our celestial neighbors. Yet its outer reaches are still remarkably unmapped....

Microbes in Space: Bioengineered Bugs Could Help Colonize New Planets

As humans spread out into the cosmos in search of life, the most alien organisms we encounter may be those we bring with us. Researchers at NASA and elsewhere are engineering microbes so they...

5 Space Companies Zeroing in on First Launch of Tourists Into Orbit and Beyond

It won’t be cheap, but your holiday plans could include a trip to the edge of Earth’s atmosphere or beyond—before the end of this year. Several space tourism companies are zeroing in on their...

Astronomers May Have Just Discovered a Dozen Black Holes in the Center of Our Galaxy

Astronomers first noticed an enigmatic object, dubbed “Sagittarius A*”, at the very heart of our Milky Way galaxy in the 1960s—the earliest days of radio and infrared astronomy. But just how extraordinary this source...

The Alt Rocket Tech That May One Day Take Humans to Mars

On Feb. 6, SpaceX made history when it launched its Falcon Heavy rocket from Cape Canaveral in Florida. It now reigns as the biggest and most powerful rocket in the world. Elon Musk, the...

SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy Launch Was a Smashing Success—What’s Next for Space Travel?

Last Tuesday, Elon Musk and the rest of the SpaceX team launched their most powerful rocket yet, leaving the entire world stupefied. The Falcon Heavy carried cargo consisting of Elon Musk’s Tesla Roadster with...

This ‘Cosmic GPS’ Tech Will Help Us Explore the Furthest Reaches of Space

Anyone who has tried their hand at sailing, or even read about the exploits of maritime explorers, understands the importance of the lighthouse. Indeed, the solitary beam of light emanating from a lighthouse’s crest...

Want Faster Data and a Cleaner Planet? Start Mining Asteroids

Mining asteroids might seem like the stuff of science fiction, but there are companies and a few governments already working hard to make it real. This should not be surprising: compared with the breathtaking...

This Unbelievable Research on Human Hibernation Could Get Us to Mars

Journeying to Mars is seldom out of the news these days. From Elon Musk releasing plans for his new rocket to allow SpaceX to colonize Mars, to NASA announcing another rover as part of...

9 Ways You Can Use Your Devices for Advanced Scientific Research

Want to help solve world problems like finding a cure for cancer? Looking to make a global impact in 2018 with minimal effort on your part? It’s relatively easy to use your devices for...

Black Holes Are Simpler Than Forests and Science Has Its Limits

Albert Einstein said that the "most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible." He was right to be astonished. Human brains evolved to be adaptable, but our underlying neural architecture has...

Oxford Study Says Alien Life Would Evolve and Adapt Just Like Life on Earth

The alternative universe known as science fiction has given our culture a menagerie of alien species. From overstuffed teddy bears like Ewoks and Wookies to terrifying nightmares such as Alien and Predator, our collective...

Here Are 4 Significant Things We Can Do to Combat Climate Change Now

Earlier this month, 13 US government agencies (NOAA, NASA, DOE, etc.) concluded that climate change is real and caused mainly by human activity. There is no question that this is happening… The only question now is:...

Study Finds ‘Dark Matter’ and ‘Dark Energy’ May Not Exist—Here’s What to Make of It

Dark matter and dark energy are mysterious, unknown substances that are thought to make up more than 96% of the universe. While we may have never directly seen them, they beautifully explain how stars...
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How Will Humans Colonize Space in the Years Ahead?

Exploration is one of humanity’s greatest drivers. We’ve moved around the planet and into almost every environment—mountains, deserts, jungles, and swamps. But will we be able to take the next step and adapt ourselves to...

The First Man-Made Meteor Shower Will Light Up Japan in 2019

The first ever man-made meteor shower has an official launch place and time. In early 2019, the meteors will create a light show in the sky above Hiroshima and the surrounding Setouchi region. The...

Dinosaurs Could Have Avoided Mass Extinction If the Killer Asteroid Had Landed Almost Anywhere Else

The decline of the dinosaurs, the rise of mammals and, ultimately, the origins of humans were even more unlikely than previously thought, according to new research. The huge asteroid collision that sparked this change...
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Dark Matter Makes Up a Quarter of the Universe, But What Is It?

Until the 1960s, scientists thought ordinary matter and radiation made up everything in the universe. Then a young physicist named Vera Rubin made a discovery that shook things up. Rubin uncovered an unexpected relationship...
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Einstein Was a Genius, But Was He Always Right?

Einstein was a genius, there’s no debating that. He was a Nobel Prize-winner who changed our understanding of nature more than anyone since Newton. Einstein is famous for his theory of relativity, his pioneering work...
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The Search to Find Another Earth Like Ours Is Heating Up

Are there other planets out there like our own? If so, could other forms of life, intelligence, or civilizations inhabit them? This age-old question is a key part of the study of exoplanetology, the scientific...
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Here Are 3 Good Reasons Why It’s Time to Return to the Moon

Since 1962 when President John F. Kennedy declared, “We choose to go to the moon in this decade,”moon exploration has sparked the imagination. Today, Peter Diamandis says, moon exploration is as exciting as Alaska...
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This Is What Happens to Your Body in Space

Living in space sounds pretty cool. Unfortunately, our bodies haven’t evolved to live in space without suffering harm. You may wonder, “How bad could it really be?” In space, changes in gravity cause blood to...

A Look Back at Cassini’s Incredible Mission to Saturn for Its Final Plunge Into the Planet

The Cassini space probe mission ended today when the probe made its final destructive plunge into Saturn. It’s spent the past 13 years studying the planet, its rings, and moons in unprecedented detail. Cassini wasn’t...
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We Need Space’s Endless Resources to Expand as a Species

In an interview at Singularity University’s Global Summit in San Francisco, space entrepreneur Bob Richards gave us a rundown of current efforts to explore, mine, and even settle the moon. Richards is co-founder, president, and...
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When Will We Have the Technology to Reach the Stars?

Recent advances in rocket technology are incredible. From NASA’s Space Launch System to Blue Origin and SpaceX’s reusable rockets, space is getting more accessible.  However, no rocket can get us to neighboring stars. The...
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Tech-X-Planations | Introducing a New Original Weekly Video Series

We’ve all name-dropped a new technology that sounds awesome—like CRISPR/Cas9—without really knowing the basics. This is why we’ve created Tech-x-planations, Singularity Hub’s new weekly video series that explores fundamental ideas in science, technology, and the...

Why We Should Send All Our Politicians to Space

Our world is far from perfect. While the world has been getting better in many ways, we are also continuously faced with challenges. War, political conflict, and social injustices continue to hinder human progress. All...

Risk Takers Are Back in the Space Race—and That’s a Good Thing

“In a fight between Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, who would win?” Peter Diamandis asked Blue Origin’s Erika Wagner to kick off a conversation with a panel of space entrepreneurs at Singularity University’s Global...

We Worked Out What It Would Take to Wipe Out All Life on a Planet—and It’s Good News for Alien Hunters

The first exoplanet was spotted in 1988. Since then more than 3,000 planets have been found outside our solar system, and it’s thought that around 20% of Sun-like stars have an Earth-like planet in...

‘Biological Teleportation’ Edges Closer With Craig Venter’s Digital-to-Biological Converter

The year is 2030. In a high-security containment lab, scientists gathered around a towering machine, eagerly awaiting the first look at a newly discovered bacterium on Mars. With a series of beeps, the machine—a digital-to-biological...

Why Interstellar Travel Will Be Possible Sooner Than You Think

The term “moonshot” is sometimes invoked to denote a project so outrageously ambitious that it can only be described by comparing it to the Apollo 11 mission to land the first human on the...

A Mars Survival Guide: Finding Food, Water, and Shelter on the Red Planet

Classical science fiction tales about Mars have often been about bug-eyed Martians invading Earth for its precious resources. The reality is that within the next two decades—with the usual caveats about technical and budgetary...

Dwarf Planetary Systems Will Transform the Hunt for Alien Life

Written speculation about life beyond the confines of Earth dates back thousands of years, to the time of the Greek philosophers Epicurus and Democritus. Unrecorded curiosity about this question undoubtedly goes back much further...

This Is What Makes Quantum Computers Powerful Problem Solvers

In a previous article, I introduced the recent open-sourcing of quantum computing software by DWave. DWave is the maker of a quantum computer being used and studied by a number of groups, including NASA...

The Body Is the Missing Link for Truly Intelligent Machines

It’s tempting to think of the mind as a layer that sits on top of more primitive cognitive structures. We experience ourselves as conscious beings, after all, in a way that feels different to...

What You Need to Know About Elon Musk’s Plan to Fly People to the Moon

What On February 27, Elon Musk’s SpaceX announced plans to fly two non-astronauts, or “private citizens,” on a loop around the moon. Who No one except Elon Musk and the two moon-explorers-to-be know who they are yet....

Citizen Science Means Anyone Could Discover Planet Nine—Even You

In the first week that US scientists recruited the public to help identify a possible ninth planet in our solar system, more than 20,000 people volunteered to join the search. About 50,000 people around...

Families Finally Hear From Completely Paralyzed Patients Via New Mind-Reading Device

Wendy was barely 20 years old when she received a devastating diagnosis: juvenile amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), an aggressive neurodegenerative disorder that destroys motor neurons in the brain and the spinal cord.* Within half a...

10 Tech Trends That Made the World Better in 2016

2016 was an incredible year for technology, and for humanity. Despite all the negative political-related news, there were 10 tech trends this year that positively transformed humanity. For this “2017 Kick-Off” post, I reviewed 52 weeks...

Is Virtual Reality the Surprising Solution to the Fermi Paradox?

“If the transcension hypothesis is correct, inner space, not outer space, is the final frontier for universal intelligence. Our destiny is density.” –John Smart Only decades into our “age of cosmology” — the moment when we...

5 Reasons This Was an Awesome Year for Space Exploration

On 14 February, 1990, as the spacecraft Voyager 1 was leaving our planetary neighborhood, legendary astronomer and cosmologist, Carl Sagan, suggested that NASA engineers turn it around for one last look at Earth from...

What Happens When Tech Takes Control of Evolution?

Over the span of a few billion years, diversity of life has flourished on Earth through the process of natural selection. Then, not long ago (relatively), human intelligence evolved. For the first time one species,...

The Race to Wrap the Earth in Internet Is Heating Up

How important is the internet to your day-to-day life? For starters, you’re definitely reading this on a screen and using the internet to access it. That means you probably use the internet to access most...

This Is How to Invent Radical Solutions to Huge Problems

If you force a grasshopper into a jar and fasten the lid, the grasshopper eventually shortens its jump after hitting the lid enough times.  After a while, even if you take the lid off the...

How a Mars Voyage Will Be Like Enduring an Antarctic Winter

Humans will get to Mars in the not-so-distant future. We know that. What we don’t know is how a journey to the Red Planet will affect us both mentally and physically. NASA is turning to...

Elon Musk Is Right: We Can Insure Against Extinction by Colonizing Space

Why blow billions of dollars on space exploration when billions of people are living in poverty here on Earth? You’ve likely heard the justifications. The space program brings us useful innovations and inventions. Space exploration...
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Ask an Expert: How Snowden Can Help SETI

Every week, Singularity University’s YouTube channel debuts a new episode of Ask an Expert, a Twitter-sourced Q&A with experts answering questions about everything from living forever to the unexpected ways blockchain will change humanity. This week, former director of the NASA...

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