Comparing travelling to space in a rocket much like crossing the Atlantic using a catapult, The Conversation's Leon Vanstone opines that in order for humanity to explore the universe, it needs to find a better way to get into space, fast. One option may be the SKYLON spaceplane, a reusable vehicle capable of taking off and landing like a regular airplane, but sporting engines capable of taking it into orbit.
Being so inefficient means that the only way to get all your cargo to the height and speed you need via rocket is to jettison the empty fuel tanks as soon as they run dry. For this very reason, rockets are staged; that is, split into sections. When one section runs out of fuel, you can drop the weight of its empty container.
Very little of the rocket actually makes it to orbit, with most of the parts either crashed, burnt, or floating aimlessly in space. You can’t reuse it because you can barely get it there, let alone get it back.
|"It's the equivalent of being able to see a grapefruit on the surface of the Moon."|
|"Warp drives could become a real technology within the lifetimes of today’s toddlers."|
|“You can make spaceships much bigger than anything we’ve seen so far in history.”|
|The Universe: 100 Million Years Older Than Estimated, Slower and Just a Bit Lopsided|
|NASA Begins Year-Long Mars Simulation Training|
|Folding Laundry Without Arms or Legs|
|“[T]here has never been this kind of financial incentive to make shorter songs.”|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|“A short cut through spacetime allowing for travel over cosmic scale distances in a short period.”|
|“If you fell asleep in 1945 and woke up in 2018 you would not recognize the world around you.”|
|Google Map Shows You the Most Photographed Areas of the World|
|“The very fact that apps – like a period tracker or an LED flashlight [app] – share data with Facebook will come as a surprise to many people.”|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|Recycled Vacuum Lamps|