NASA Breaks Record With Ion Thruster That Could Take Humans To Mars

By: Jonathan O’Callaghan/IFLScience  Scientists have announced a breakthrough with an ion thruster that could one day take humans to Mars. It’s called the X3 thruster, a type of ion propulsion known as a Hall thruster. This technology is alluring because it can theoretically achieve higher speeds than conventional chemical propulsion. In a series of tests at NASA’s Glenn…

Enormous Meteor With Energy Equal To 540 Tonnes Of TNT Spotted Over China

By: Chris Jones/IFLScience The sky was lit up on the night of 4th October 2017 a meteor tore through the atmosphere over the Shangri-La County in Yunnan Province of China. The meteor was spotted at around 8 pm local time, and luckily, many locals captured the spectacular event on camera. According to NASA’s Center For Near-Earth Object Studies,…

Do You Have What It Takes To Be NASA’s New Planetary Protection Officer?

By: Katy Evans/IFL Science  It sounds like a pretty cool job right? Sort of superhero-y, protecting the planet from alien invasion, possibly an awesome outfit, probably a supergalactic weapon of some kind? Not quite, but NASA really is looking to fill the position of “Planetary Protection Officer” (PPO), and you can apply here. The position is actually…

NASA Is Going To Test A Mini Fission Reactor That Might One Day Be Used On Mars

By: Jonathan Callaghan/IFL Science  NASA is investigating an intriguing new method to power future space missions, which may help humans live on the surface of Mars. As reported by Irene Klotz over at Space.com, the $15 million project is known as Kilopower. From September of this year until January 2018, they’re going to start testing the system. Nuclear…