Ideas taking flight… and landing!

The space between theory and reality in space travel just narrowed dramatically for humankind. Mere days after Erika Wagner spoke at TEDxRainier 2015 about space travel for the everyday person, we can now celebrate an historic feat in rocket science taking us one step towards commercial space travel!

In a test launch on Monday, November 24th in the Texas desert, Blue Origin (where Wagner works) sent a rocket 62 miles above earth, and then brought it back down in a perfectly safe vertical landing. A successful landing of a spent rocket leaps a huge hurdle for space travel, and Blue Origin plans to put this advancement towards one day sending civilian astronauts up into space to look down at their home planet, weightless from above.

This idea worth spreading has literally taken flight! Watch this incredible video of New Shepard’s successful landing below, and congratulations to Erika Wagner and the Blue Origin team!


Autonomous fish robots and bio-inspired engineering

See how engineers are learning from biological systems to solve problems beyond what our current technologies have been able to achieve. Mathematical models, based on studies of fish, is allowing designed engineered systems to prototype robotic fish that can operate in dynamic ocean conditions over months of continuous use.


Asteroids are closer than you think

Learn about the surprising number and range of near earth asteroids and how they are forming a platform for solar system exploration. Chris Lewicki has worked with NASA and is a leader in pioneering technologies that are addressing the challenges of space habitation and managing extraterrestrial resources.