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31 Fantastic Photos from NASA’s Glory Days

NASA Glory Days Ed White

Ed White floats out of the Gemini IV capsule during the first U.S. spacewalk in 1965. Source: NASA

The Soviet Union launched Sputnik in 1957. For United States leaders, it was one of the chilliest moments of the Cold War as the Soviets had shown technical capabilities far more advanced than their own and expanded the “battlefield” not just to the sky, but outer space.

A year after the Sputnik launch, President Dwight Eisenhower and the U.S. Congress created the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in an effort to catch up – and hopefully pass – their Soviet rivals in the so-called “Space Race.” In the following years, NASA launched a sequence of programs – Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo – that would systematically check off all the steps needed to explore space. Mercury focused on getting a man into orbit. Gemini put two-men teams into space to perform spacewalks, separate sections of spacecraft, and safely link them together again. Apollo headed to the moon, and our world would change.

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What’s Happening To Monarch Butterfly Migration?

The monarch butterfly is the long-distance runner–or in this case, flier–of the insect world. No other butterflies migrate as far as the monarch of North America, which flies up to three thousand miles each year. Millions of these butterflies will fly from Mexico to Canada this spring, though populations in Florida don’t travel. Come autumn, they’ll return to overwintering sites in Mexico.

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Kazakhstan’s Real-Life “Sleepy Hollow”

Kazakhstan Sleeping Sickness

Source: Wikimedia

Imagine going about your day to day life only to abruptly fall asleep, waking up days or even a week later with no memory of what’s happened. Sound a bit like the plot of a horror movie? In a small town in Kazakhstan, this drama has been playing out for the better part of a year and doctors still can’t explain it.

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Why Crashing A Plane Isn’t So Easy

Pilot staying awake over ocean

An Australian pilot stays awake and alert over the monotonous sea. Source: Reuters

Planes are terrifying, right? A mix of exhilaration and sheer terror lingers in the mind when sitting on the runway, waiting for takeoff– how could something weighing over 400 tons with thousands of miles of electrical cable and 250 human beings inside of it simply launch into the sky and stay there? If you’ve got a window seat near the wing, it’s likely you’ll spend a good amount of that time examining the engine case for loose screws and hoping your pilot has gotten a good night’s sleep.

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