space | WOSU Radio


Opportunity lost.

NASA has officially declared an end to the mission of the six-wheeled rover on Mars. Opportunity lost power in a dust storm last June, and all efforts to make contact have failed.

"Our beloved Opportunity remained silent," Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, said Wednesday at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "With a sense of deep appreciation and gratitude," he added, "I declare the Opportunity mission as complete."

The new head of NASA is saying good things about the NASA Glenn Research Center in northern Ohio.

Vice President Pence described the White House's plans for a Space Force, a sixth branch of the U.S. military that would be responsible for operations in outer space, in a speech on Thursday.

The White House says that the Space Force will be created by 2020. The change, which would require approval from Congress, would be a dramatic change in the organization of the Defense Department.

"We must have American dominance in space, and so we will," Pence said in his speech at the Pentagon.

The Future of Space Travel

Aug 9, 2018

American astronauts haven’t been sent into orbit in almost a decade. 

NASA halted its space shuttle program in 2011 because it was too expensive. 

But that’s going to change next year.

The space agency announced last week that four flights will take astronauts to the International Space Station in 2019. The team, called the Commercial Crew Nine, will also be the first people to fly on private spacecrafts.

Join us today for a discussion about what the future holds for space colonization, tourism and the Trump Administration’s Space Force.

Perkins Observatory Director Tom Burns Retires

Jul 31, 2018
NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

Tom Burns ends his 25-year avocation as director of Ohio Wesleyan University Perkins Observatory, where he has volunteered countless hours over the decades through talks and programs on astronomy.

He also has been a great friend to 89.7 WOSU Public Media as a frequent guest on All Sides with Ann Fisher.

On the last day of his role as director at Perkins, Tom Burns shares his favorite memories and what’s exciting in the night sky. 



An Italian team of scientists says it has strong evidence of a subsurface lake of liquid water on Mars. It's a discovery that adds to the speculation that there could once have been life on Mars — and raises the possibility that it might be there still today, since liquid water is an essential ingredient for life.


While nuclear power in Ohio heads into the sunset, NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland has developed a portable nuclear energy system for outer space.

More than 400 years after Galileo Galilei discovered the first of Jupiter's moons, astronomers have found a dozen more — including one they've dubbed "oddball" — orbiting the planet. That brings the total number of Jovian moons to 79.


There have been many studies conducted on how to best recover after exercising, but questions remain as to whether post-workout activities actually provide results or if we just think we feel better from them. Join us for a conversation with an expert on the topic.

We will also take a peek into Clintonville's health-friendly fast casual spot, Pocket Produce, and then step into space with a look at what happens to the human body beyond the Earth.

A NASA rendering of how CubeRRT satellite will look in space.
Ohio State University

The Ohio State University has sent its first satellite into space.

The CubeSat Radiometer Radio Frequency Interference Technology Validation mission, also known as CubeRRT, looks to improve the transmission of radio communication between Earth and astronauts.

NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland has unveiled a new source of power for deep space missions.

The device, about the size of a beer keg, generates electricity through a controlled nuclear reaction.

It’s a mini-nuclear reactor called Kilopower.

At its unveiling Wednesday, NASA engineers said that it could power a lunar space station, or missions to Mars and beyond.

A critical part of NASA's next $2 billion rover mission to Mars broke during testing earlier this month.

The Mars 2020 mission's heat shield was undergoing stress-testing when it developed a crack that appeared around its entire circumference. The shield is designed to protect the rover as it enters the Martian atmosphere.

Updated March 2 at 12:43 p.m.

NASA is approving a UC student project for launch. The space agency announced its decision Friday.

NASA Glenn Research Center / Facebook

NASA’s Acting Administrator Robert Lightfoot has announced the agency’s proposed budget for the next fiscal year. The nearly $20 billion spending blueprint focuses on a new mission to the moon, and a prominent piece of that plan is being built in Cleveland.

Astronomers have spotted some kind of outer space rock that's the first visitor from outside of our solar system that they've ever observed.

The discovery has set off a mad scramble to point telescopes at this fast-moving object to try to learn as much as possible before it zips out of sight.