We can't change when or how long we live. All that really counts is what we do. Space exploration has technical, political and mental challenges, but rewards us with surprising knowledge. It's one of humanity's noblest endeavors and the focus of my work since 1987.

Author Stories
Feb 12, 2016 12:00 PM ET
The European Space Agency is giving up on trying to contact the lost Philae comet lander, which had an unexpectedly rough touchdown after its release 16 months ago from the orbiting Rosetta mothership.
Feb 12, 2016 02:15 PM ET
Astronauts, cancer patients and other people exposed to bone-zapping radiation may want to start eating prunes.
Feb 11, 2016 10:35 AM ET
Detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes has been confirmed, proving a critical Einstein theory.
Feb 10, 2016 12:17 PM ET
SpaceX returns to Florida this month for its second launch of the year, a commercial mission to deliver a communications spacecraft into orbit -- plus a possible ocean rocket landing.
Feb 3, 2016 01:00 PM ET
Gravity measurements taken by the orbiting Rosetta spacecraft show the body of comet 67 P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is about 75 percent dust and 25 percent ice all the way through.
Jan 29, 2016 04:43 PM ET
The Mars-sized object that hit baby Earth some 4.5 billion years ago, creating plumes of debris that eventually coalesced into the moon, was a head-on strike.
Jan 28, 2016 07:00 AM ET
Three decades after NASA's Space Shuttle Challenger exploded shortly after lift-off, we take a look back at that terrible morning in 1986 and its powerful legacy.
Jan 25, 2016 07:01 PM ET
An orphan planet free-floating in space more than 100 light-years from Earth may have a parent star after all, though the relationship could hardly be considered close.
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