Stories by Michael Cooney

  • Hot space projects produce cool cosmic discoveries

    Big Bang: In the past month or so there has been a plethora of wicked cool discoveries coming from NASA satellites and space-watching missions across the globe. Never-before-seen photos of Jupiter's Great Red Spot, Mars moon Phobos, black hole formation and a new exoplanet are just a few of the amazing images. In an effort to keep up with these rapid-fire discoveries, we have gathered together 15 of the coolest images of these hot space projects.

  • NASA space shuttle gearing up for big phase out

    While politicians banter about NASA’s budget and the future of manned space flight, the space agency is prepping the critical technology its remaining four space shuttle missions will deliver to complete the International Space Station.

  • NASA facing game-changing times

    When NASA Administrator Charles Bolden releases the space agency’s fiscal year 2011 budget this week it will likely be the beginning of a startling new phase of space research and activities.

  • How will NASA defend Earth against killer asteroids and comets?

    Combinations of space- and ground-based telescopes may be the most economically palpable defenses NASA can mount against asteroids and comets heading toward Earth, but there are more advanced defenses involving spacecraft and nuclear explosions that might be plausible in the future.

  • NASA telescopes watch cosmic violence, mysteries unravel

    In the past few days there has been a burst of new photos and information from all manner of NASA's spacecraft and telescopes. The devices, ranging from the Hubble to Kepler the Spitzer telescopes, are delivering new information on everything from massive supergiant stars to new planets. Here we've gathered up some of them for a quick look.

  • NASA Mars rover Spirit has survivability option?

    As NASA celebrates its Mars rover Spirit’s sixth anniversary exploring the red planet it is hunting for a way to keep the machine, which is mired in a sand trap, alive to see a seventh year. On its Web site, the space agency this week noted there may indeed be such an option.

  • NASA helicopter crash tests flying airbag

    NASA is looking to reduce the deadly impact of helicopter crashes on their pilots and passengers with what the agency calls a high-tech honeycomb airbag known as a deployable energy absorber.

  • Commercial spaceship roll-out revs space tourism

    Looking to keep the hype machine revved as customers wait at least another year, space tourism company Virgin Galactic today will debut the suborbital SpaceShipTwo spacecraft it expects will take the first space tourists on a ride they’ll never forget.

  • IBM smartphone software translates 11 languages

    Researchers at IBM say they have created smart software that that translates text between English and 11 other languages including Chinese, Korean, Japanese, French, Italian, Russian, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Arabic.