The first of three planned configurations of NASA's Space Launch System (SLS), known as Block 1, has completed and passed the final Critical Design Review (CDR). This is the fourth and final review focusing on the concept and design of NASA's first man-rated launcher since the Space Shuttle and paves the way for full-scale fabrication of the first exploration-class rocket since the Saturn V and the most powerful rocket ever built.
The Louis Moinet Vertalor tourbillon wristwatch has just won the Tourbillon category of this year's International Chronometry Competition – an event described as "the equivalent of five Formula 1 Grand Prix races – without a single pit stop."
Most cigar boxes are cheap cardboard affairs that are useful for keeping bits and pieces in or turning into an inexpensive guitar. Definitely not in the homespun musical category is the Emperador cigar chest from Imperiali Genève. This is a high-tech container that holds two dozen bespoke cigars and clocks in at a cool one million Swiss francs (US$1,048,000) – making this both one of the most expensive and technologically advanced cigar boxes in history.
A unique relic of the Space Age went on the auction block at RR Auction this week with the Bulova wristwatch worn on the Moon in 1971 by Colonel David Scott as Commander of Apollo 15 sold for US$1,625,000. The Bulova Wrist Chronograph was carried on the mission's third surface EVA as a backup timepiece to the NASA-issue Omega watch worn on US manned missions. The personal property of Scott, it is the only watch to return from the Moon to remain in private hands.
NASA confirmed today that the New Horizons deep-space probe has successfully carried out the first of four course corrections designed to culminate in a rendezvous with a Kuiper Belt object one billion miles beyond Pluto in 2019.
Usually, when you dunk a tiny flying robot in the water you end up with a tiny sinking robot. Engineers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) want to change that with the RoboBee, which has claimed the title of the first insect-insect sized robot that can swim as well as fly.
Lockheed Martin has completed final assembly of NASA's Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith EXplorer (OSIRIS-REx) deep-space probe. The unmanned spacecraft, designed to rendezvous with an asteroid and return samples to Earth, will now undergo five months of environmental testing at the company’s Space Systems facilities near Denver before delivery to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
ESA has named the Oxia Planum region as the primary candidate for the landing site of the ExoMars 2018 Mars mission. The Russo-European mission to the Red Planet is the second of two missions of the ExoMars program and is aimed at demonstrating new technologies and seeking signs of past or present life. Consisting of a lander and rover, the mission is scheduled to launch in May 2018 with a landing in January 2019.
Earlier this year, Carl Reese and Deena Mastracci made a 3,011-mile (4,846-km) drive from Los Angeles to New York in 58 hours and 51 minutes in a Tesla Model S P85D to set a record for the coast-to-coast journey for an electric vehicle. Now Reese and Mastracci, joined by Alex Roy, have beaten that record with the help of Tesla's new Autopilot software.
It doesn't have a flux capacitor and may not be able to travel through time like its inspiration in the 1985 feature Back to the Future, but Stanford University's converted DeLorean Multiple Actuator Research Test bed for Yaw (MARTY) can cut some wicked donuts without the aid of a driver. The creation of professor of mechanical engineering Chris Gerdes and his students, the autonomous, electric, drifting automotive research vehicle is part of a student-driven research project into the physical limits of autonomous driving that aims to improve the safe operation of self-driving cars under all conditions.