NASA vs. SpaceX - what's the difference?
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Why is NASA sending a spacecraft to a metal world?
In 2026, an unmanned NASA spacecraft is scheduled to arrive at 16 Psyche, a massive, metallic asteroid floating somewhere between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Why is NASA so interested in this heavy metal asteroid? Are we going to mine all that metal, or build a giant space magnet? Linda T. Elkins-Tanton explains how the real answer can be found right under our feet.
The journey to Pluto, the farthest world ever explored
As of 1989, mankind had successfully sent craft to every known planet in the solar system except one: Pluto. Located in an mysterious region called the Kuiper Belt, Pluto is a scientific goldmine, and could hold clues to the formation of our solar system. Alan Stern explains how NASA's New Horizons mission is going to allow us to see Pluto for the first time.
With its Moon announcement, did SpaceX kick off the first public-private space race? - The Verge
SpaceX shocked the spaceflight community by announcing a new ambitious goal for 2018: sending two people around the Moon. The two passengers are not NASA astronauts; they are, instead, wealthy tourists, who have already put down a “significant deposit” for the trip. If SpaceX pulls this mission off, it will be the first private company to take civilians beyond lower Earth orbit.
Mission to Mars: here are all of the Red Planet plans in the works - Space.com
NASA will send astronauts to Mars before the end of the 2030s, reaffirming a directive he gave the space agency back in 2010. But there's no guarantee that NASA will get there first; several other organizations also have the Red Planet in their sights, and on more aggressive timelines. Here's a brief rundown of these ambitious Mars projects — what they hope to accomplish, and when.