Category Archives: Space

Dr. Gladys West

The quiet dedication of a hidden hero who made satellite geodesy and global positioning possible. As early as high school, the focused determination of Dr. Gladys West would see her rise to make key contributions to one of the most impactful scientific endeavors of our age. In our recent interview with xyHt magazine, West gave...

NASA’s Eyes on Mars

NASA’s InSight Mars lander took this image using its robotic arm-mounted Instrument Deployment Camera. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech. An old imaging technology is outdated for use on Earth, but it’s the perfect fit for today’s remote-sensing needs on Mars. Since 1960, at the dawn of the space age, humankind has launched dozens of missions to Mars, from...

African Ethnic Map

“Welcome to Africa” via GIS

While in the middle of teaching GIS to my masters students, the squeaky ceiling fan above us suddenly went off. It was another power cut, the third in two hours. “Bienvenue en Afrique, Monsieur,” quipped one of my best students, making everyone laugh. I wiped the sweat off my forehead. Welcome to Africa, or precisely,...

SABRE

Rocketry Revolution #4: Air Breathing Rockets

In a Pangaea issue entitled Revolution #3, I laid out the latest three revolutions in rocketry. Reusable rockets like SpaceX and Blue Origin, Air-launched rockets like Stratolaunch and Virgin Orbit, and Drone-launched rockets as exemplified by the Aevum Raven. Each revolution is designed to make space more affordable and accessible. Reusable rockets are obviously more...

Spencer Disque

Systems Engineer, Sigma Space Corporation Washington, D.C., USA Spencer Disque has been with Sigma Space Corporation since 2009. Starting as a mechanical engineer, he designed airborne and spaceborne science instruments for NASA projects and supported them for field campaigns. He also supported design and flight testing of single photon lidar (SPL) in the infancy of the program. Over...

Surveying Instruments on Mars

Above image credit: National Geographic Keen-eyed viewers of the groundbreaking National Geographic Channel series “Mars,” now in its second season, might have noticed familiar-looking equipment among the near-future science fiction gadgets—surveying instruments. We highly recommend this series for the techie and non-techie alike. It’s a mix of the story of a fictionalized first Mars colony,...