space

Space.com

If you’ve got a wish list that includes shooting stars, this is a great time to dust it off and put it to use.

The Orionid meteor shower peaks this weekend, according to space.com

The meteors are from Halley’s Comet, which swings by the earth every 75 years or so.

The icy comet leaves behind a trail of debris that the earth passes through a couple of times a year.

Mid-October is one of those times.

Wikimedia Commons

Governor Rick Scott is feeling the heat from school boards and superintendents across Florida to veto a massive package of education bills, which center around the issue of school choice. We’ll talk to folks on both sides of the debate. 

And, Duval County Schools has identified an interim superintendent even though it’s current superintendent hasn’t left just yet. We have the latest.

Then, we’ll visit one Jacksonville school teacher who, through sharing her love of reading with her students, is inspiring the next generation of literary artists. Also, a settlement is in sight after years of litigation in a housing discrimination against the city.

And finally, commercial space travel might soon be just an hour away for Jacksonville residents. But first, freshman Congressman John Rutherford is back in the spotlight. Find out why on Redux.

A 12-year-old Jacksonville girl is setting her sights on space.

Taylor Richardson hopes to be the first African American woman to set foot on Mars.

Richardson spoke about her mission on Monday’s First Coast Connect.

NASA astronaut web page
NASA

NASA is looking for astronauts to help blaze a trail to Mars. The space agency started accepting applications Monday.

To be considered, applicants must be U.S. citizens with at least a bachelor’s degree in science, math or engineering.

Competition is expected to be intense: Of the more than 6,000 people who applied for NASA’s last astronaut class in 2013, only eight made it.

The crash of a Virgin Galactic spaceship last fall in California's Mojave Desert was caused by pilot error and design problems, the National Transportation and Safety Board announced Tuesday after a nine-month investigation.

Generation Orbit

An airport on the Southwest side of Jacksonville is readying itself for a different kind of flight. Cecil Spaceport has completed some of its first upgrades to get ready for trips to outer space.

Aviation officials say Cecil Spaceport’s target launch date is some time next year. That’s when a horizontal-launching spacecraft fitted with a rocket on its belly is first expected to take off to put small satellites in earth’s orbit.

Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter / University of Arizona

Last night, Mars rose in the east as it passed opposition for 2014, giving lunar observers a rare and ominous treat — the appearance of a "blood moon."

Michael Dunn, Jimmy Ryce, and Kelly Mathis are in the headlines today.

Virgin Galactic / YouTube

Virgin Galactic recently completed their third powered test flight of SpaceShipTwo, a “space plane” that will give everyday people the opportunity to experience the realms of outer space.

CNTV

Local author Chris Berman’s recent novel Red Moon was intended as fiction, but his prediction of an unmanned Chinese moon mission came to pass at the end of last year.

NASA caught our eye earlier today when the space agency tweeted a composite image of the huge winter storm that has covered parts of the Midwest and Eastern U.S. with a deep blanket of snow.

The photos that make up the image were taken Thursday, NASA says, during several passes of its Aqua satellite. The craft used its Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer — MODIS — "to capture this true-color image of a massive winter storm moving up the eastern seaboard," the agency says.

NASA

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Two space station astronauts have floated outside on Christmas Eve in hopes of wrapping up urgent cooling system repairs.

It's only the second Christmas Eve spacewalk in NASA history. The first was 14 years ago. And it's the second spacewalk in four days for U.S. astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Michael Hopkins.

Mastracchio and Hopkins removed a faulty ammonia pump at the International Space Station during Saturday's outing. On Tuesday, they'll work to install a new pump 260 miles above the planet.

The first humans to catch a glimpse of the Earth rising over the moon nearly missed seeing it at all, let alone capturing the snapshot that became one of the most iconic photos of the 20th century.

NASA has released an animation commemorating the 45th anniversary of Apollo 8, the first manned mission to orbit the moon. The famous "Earthrise" photo was taken on Christmas Eve 1968.

The United Nations General Assembly may approve a plan soon for the world's space agencies to defend the Earth against asteroids.

European Southern Observatory

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — This is one baby picture you won't want to miss.