Aerospace & Defense News - Space.

 
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New York (AirGuideBusiness - Space News) Mar 4, 2012

Scientists develop new method for finding extraterrestrial life Astronomers think they've found a new approach to determining whether a planet can sustain life, and they tested it by confirming that Earth is teeming with living things. According to Michael Sterzik of ESO, by using a large telescope and a technique known as "earthshine observation" that gauges the polarization of light, it's possible to decipher the biosignature of a celestial body. "Finding life outside the solar system depends on two things: whether this life exists in the first place and having the technical capability to detect it. This work is an important step towards reaching that capability," said astronomer Enric Palle. Mar 1, 2012

Airborne-missile defense work is ending The Pentagon has ended its airborne-missile program after funding for the system dried up. The program, which involved positioning a laser gun on the nose of a Boeing 747, cost $5 billion in federal funding over 15 years of development. The Pentagon says the technology involved "will be useful for future missile defense systems," this feature says. Feb 29, 2012

The Case for Space. Why We Should Keep Reaching for the Stars By Neil deGrasse Tyson In 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama articulated his vision for the future of American space exploration, which included an eventual manned mission to Mars. Such an endeavor would surely cost hundreds of billions of dollars -- maybe even $1 trillion. Whatever the amount, it would be an expensive undertaking. In the past, only three motivations have led societies to spend that kind of capital on ambitious, speculative projects: the celebration of a divine or royal power, the search for profit, and war. Examples of praising power at great expense include the pyramids in Egypt, the vast terra-cotta army buried along with...

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