Why do I worry about all the space junk?

I first wrote this article when they found Beagle2, the Mars probe that crashed.  There it was, the main probe largely intact, and a load of debris spread across the Martian landscape like the residue of family picnic after a nice day in the sun. Of course, not all families leave the rubbish behind, but… Continue reading Why do I worry about all the space junk?

Go silently into the unknown

I first wrote about the Voyager spacecraft a few years back.  Voyager 1, a probe launched from earth in 1977 was on the verge of entering interstellar space, that fabulous void that fills most of the known universe.  Voyager finally achieved this about five years ago, being the first man-made object to do so, an… Continue reading Go silently into the unknown

Tinkering around in the back garden, with the occasional look over the fence

We are reaching out to the other celestial bodies in our solar system. We are sending probes to scan, we are placing satellites in orbit, we look through telescopes and land little exploration vehicles on distant surfaces. These are all methods designed to send back data to the banks of computers that support them which… Continue reading Tinkering around in the back garden, with the occasional look over the fence

Beyond the Event Horizon

Black holes, once just seen as things of science fiction, now widely accepted to exist at the center of every galaxy.  They come in various sizes, from your common garden variety to the super-massive black holes believed to be millions the size of our own sun. What are they?  Collapsed stars where the matter has… Continue reading Beyond the Event Horizon