Hello and Welcome to a special edition of “This Week In Space.” I am talking about what might very well be the beginning of a new era in space – the door might have opened with the successful inaugural test … Continue readingTagged Cape Canaveral, Elon Musk, Falcon 9, Low Earth orbit, Merlin (rocket engine), Space, SpaceX, SpaceX Dragon
I was fast asleep when the Challenger exploded. It was almost high noon – but I had turned in only about three hours before. I had spent the night in a citrus grove in Polk County, Florida. I was a … Continue readingTagged Cape Canaveral, John Glenn, Low Earth orbit, NASA, Space, Space exploration, Space Shuttle program, Vandenberg Air Force Base
Deep in the heart of Texas – a big step on the road to sending privately built spacecraft to the International Space Station. Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, ran a full duration test of the second stage motor for its … Continue readingTagged Cape Canaveral, Elon Musk, Falcon 1, Falcon 9, International Space Station, NASA, Space, SpaceX
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — WESH 2 News struck a nerve with an exclusive report as NASA actively works to prevent shuttle sabotage from within its ranks. While there is no indication that sabotage has ever or will ever happen, officials … Continue readingTagged Cape Canaveral, Fuel tank, Kennedy Space Center, NASA, Space, Space Shuttle, Space Shuttle program, Technology, United Space Alliance
Gus Grissom: You’ve got it all wrong, the issue here ain’t pussy. The issue here is monkey. John Glenn: What? Gus Grissom: Us. We are the monkey. Deke Slayton: What Gus is saying is that we’re missing the point. What … Continue readingTagged Cape Canaveral, Chuck Yeager, Gus Grissom, John Glenn, Laika, Right Stuff, Soviet Union, Space
HINKLEY, Calif. – We all love a neat, tidy Hollywood ending to a David and Goliath story. Sadly, in the real world, they are hard to come by. More often than not, the little guy might win a battle, but Goliath prevails over the long haul — winning the war.
Before I went to Hinkley, I did, of course, watch the movie once again. As it turns out Erin Brockovich is accurate in many respects.
You might remember the woman who gets a big check at the end of the movie after the down-on-her-luck, crusading legal assistant has brought a giant utility to its knees for polluting the groundwater beneath the tiny desert town half way between L.A. and Las Vegas.
In the movie, she was known as Donna Jensen (and played by Marg Helgenberger). There is no real-life Donna Jensen — the details of her story are a composite of several real-life travails.
But Roberta Walker was the main inspiration. Naturally, it was not long after I met her that I asked her what she thought of the movie.
Miles O’Brien is a veteran freelance broadcast and web journalist who focuses on science, technology & aerospace.
He is the Science Correspondent for PBS NewsHour, and a regular correspondent for the PBS documentary series FRONTLINE and the National Science Foundation Science Nation series.
For nearly seventeen of his thirty years in the news business, he worked for CNN as the Science and Space Correspondent and the anchor of various programs, including American Morning.
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E-mail Miles: miles [at] milesobrien [dot] com