Usually whenever I hear or especially see anything about NASA my jaw involuntarily drops. It’s hard to not be amazed by what NASA stands for (not the acronym silly, the mission!) and the sheer volume of advancement of human knowledge thanks to them. Not only because they are publicly funded but part of their scientific and pedagogic mission is to make as much of that information as accessible as possible, and their website – one of the best web 2.0 examples out there I’d reckon – is a reflection of this, from their Image of the Day gallery which I’ve blogged about before to the list of all space missions they’ve launched; if you dig deep you’ll find radio podcasts, TV channels, and extremely high-res photos of space-pr0n.



Anyhow the Boston Globe recently published online some photos of NASA’s Constellation program which essentially will replace the Space Shuttle program with rocket-launched flights. While the pictures above aren’t your typical space-pr0n, part of my fascination (with the world in general!) is seeing what goes on behind the scenes, in the labs, out on the test-fields. These images excite me because they show the transition of a space – from one containing hardware, dismantled, to the installation of the Launch Control Center. The amount of labor that goes on inside NASA must be intense; this is merely the transition of one facility, now imagine the work needed to handle, transport, fabricate and study everything from rocket propulsion to robots operating off-world, etc etc. It’s a shame the comments at the Boston Globe are riddled with cries about taxpayers’ dollars. Even in this economic downturn I wouldn’t opt for a cut in spending towards programs like NASA, which accounts for only just over half of one percent of all federal funding (see Wikipedia article). Clearly NASA is not the problem; and what they offer us in return cannot be measured by any financial ruler.

Now here’s some real pr0n for you:


Heat shield baby! Because while it’s cold in space re-entry is HOT HOT HOT!