Supernova Condensate is a blog about our place in the Universe. Of astronomy, chemistry and life in the big bad bubble of academia.
Invader Xan is a molecular astrophysicist and part-time alien invader, who spends life looking at very small things on very large scales, and trying to better understand the chemistry of interstellar space.
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Category Archives: Tech
3D printing really is pretty amazing. By laying down successive layers of precursor material (typically liquid or powder), a 3D printer can create essentially any solid object, no matter how intricate. On the small scale, 3D printing technology has already … Continue reading
Anyone who’s been paying attention this last year will know that it’s been a turbulent year for space telescopes. Turbulent, but not without some unexpected windfalls. One in particular is that earlier this year, the US National Reconnaissance Organisation (NRO) … Continue reading
There was an interesting tweet from the UK Space Agency yesterday… I have to agree. While it’s difficult to say exactly where the boundary of the solar system lies, it’s certainly true that the cosmic rays which Voyager’s reading seem … Continue reading
When constructed, the James Webb Space Telescope (or JWST for short) is scheduled for launch in 2018. When it does, it will be the largest and most complex orbital telescope ever constructed, with a 6.5 m primary mirror giving it … Continue reading
Dreamed up by the British Interplanetary Society in the 1970s, Daedalus was an idea for an unmanned interstellar space probe. It was to be powered by a nuclear fusion rocket, using a rocket engine bell larger than St Paul’s Cathedral. Continue reading
Starships. The idea captures the imagination, doesn’t it? But special relativity is a harsh law to live by if we, as a species, ever plan to make it beyond the constraints of our own solar system. It imposes the ultimate … Continue reading
Welcome, one and all, to another scintillating selection of spacey and scientific writings fresh from the blogosphere, for your enjoyment and perusal! This week’s flavour is very much centred around space travel – both manned and robotic. Let’s kick off … Continue reading
Setting foot on the Moon is possibly the biggest single statement of exploration, that innately human ambition, ever made. We live in a different world now, and a different time. We look back nostalgically on the Apollo missions as “the … Continue reading
Probably the coolest random fact about Curiosity – Its tyre tracks spell out JPL in morse code! In Morse code: J → • – – – P → • – – • L → • – • • If that isn’t … Continue reading