Tuesday, March 26, 2019

First official HQ render of SpaceX stainless steel Starship

On the cover of Popular Mechanic’s April 2019 issue there is the first official HQ render of SpaceX's stainless steel Starship, showing the next-generation spaceship reentering Earth’s atmosphere in a blaze of glowing metal and plasma. The image was obtained by Teslarati.

A few days ago during a visit to Doyle Ryder Elementary school in Flint, Michigan, Elon Musk teased a video showing the Starship landing at Mars Base Alpha.

Official HQ render of SpaceX stainless steel Starship

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Forest under a dome by Artur Rosa

Picture of the Day 24/3/2019 - Forest with a lake and human colony under a dome on Mars by Portuguese digital artist Artur Rosa. More of his art here.

Forest under a dome on Mars by Artur Rosa

Friday, March 22, 2019

New official renders of SpaceX Starship landing at Mars Base Alpha

Today Elon Musk visited Doyle Ryder Elementary school in Flint, Michigan and demonstrated a new video of SpaceX's Starship. Here are some render images from that presentation with Starship landing at Mars Base Alpha. Forgive the poor quality of the images as they were captured by a camera; we will definitely get better quality official renders in the future.

Official render of SpaceX Starship landing at Mars Base Alpha

Official render of SpaceX Starship approaching Mars Base Alpha

Official render of SpaceX Mars Base Alpha

Development phases of SpaceX Starship by Colin Doublier

Sketch of the development phases of SpaceX's Starship by French urban artist Colin Doublier. More of his art here.

Development phases of SpaceX Starship by Colin Doublier

Friday, March 15, 2019

JAXA lunar rover by Toyota for missions starting in 2029

On March 12 Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Toyota announced they will jointly develop a manned, pressurized lunar rover that uses fuel cell electric vehicle technologies for JAXA's planned manned missions to explore five different locations near the Moon's southern pole between 2029 and 2034. The lunar rover would have a room for two astronauts on a missions up to 42 days and a total lunar-surface cruising range of more than 10'000 kilometers.

Here are concept images and animation for the rover:

JAXA lunar rover by Toyota
Animation of the deployment of the rover:

Monday, March 11, 2019

China's Mars Camp in Qaidam Basin, Qinghai Province

On March 1, 2019 China opened it's first Mars analog research station - Mars Camp, located in a cold high-altitude desert - the Qaidam Basin in Qinghai Province. It's already the most ambitious Mars simulation station built, costing about $22 million. Covering an area of 53,330 square meters, the base can accommodate 60 people in its capsules and hundreds in the base's tents.

"The red rock area in the Qaidam Basin in Qinghai has been called the most "Martian" place on Earth, with its natural features, landscape and climate all similar to those on the red planet, said Gao Junling, the project founder. The temperatures here vary greatly between day and night, similar to those on Mars, according to Gao. He said that participants could immerse themselves in the environment and try to solve problems they might face on Mars, such as planting potatoes on Mars for food supply and solar power generation."

As information in Western media about this base is quite scarce and photos even scarcer we collected all the best photos here. Most of them are from this blog post (in Chinese).

China Mars Camp in Qaidam Basin, Qinghai Province

China Mars Camp in Qaidam Basin, Qinghai Province

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Mars truck by Pat Presley

Picture of the Day 10/3/2019 - Mars truck by American concept artist Pat Presley. More of his art here.

Mars truck by Pat Presley
The truck on the move, accompanied by a pair of speeders:
Mars truck on the move by Pat Presley

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Dawn of a new Space Age

Photo of SpaceX's Starhopper at sunset by Jaime Almaguer. The Starhopper (test vehicle of SpaceX's stainless steel Starship) is currently being built in SpaceX's Boca Chica launch facility in South Texas and scheduled to fly first test flights in March/April 2019.

Photo of SpaceX's Starhopper at sunset on Boca Chica by Jaime Almaguer

Friday, March 8, 2019

D-Mars mission habitat in southern Israel

Astronauts returning to D-Mars mission habitat in southern Israel; photo by Niamh Shaw. D-Mars (Desert Mars Analog Ramon Station) is Israel's 1st Mars analog research station similar to Mars Society's Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah, US where astronauts, scientists and space enthusiasts can train for future human missions to Mars.

The station is located in a desolate area in Israel’s Negev Desert near the 200 million-year-old, 25-mile-wide Ramon Crater. Although not an impact crater, but a rare form of erosion structures, it has a resemblance to a variety of terrain types relevant to Mars exploration. The surrounding area hosts many similarities to the Martian environment in its geology, aridity and isolation.

Astronauts returning to D-Mars mission habitat in southern Israel

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Mars colony city by Bill Wright

Picture of the Day 6/3/2019 - Mars colony city under a dome by American retro space artist Bill Wright. More of his art here.

Mars colony city by Bill Wright