An image from Iran's state-controlled Press TV showing the monkey that was reportedly sent into space today strapped into its seat.
January 28, 2013 The nation's official media reports the primate was sent up about 75 miles. It reportedly survived the trip. Iran says it's aiming to launch a manned mission in five to eight years. Other nations are concerned that the program is really aimed at developing long-range missiles.
Astronaut Alan Shepard became the first American in space in 1961. He later developed an inner ear problem that grounded him from space flight until an operation cured him.
December 13, 2012 Commercial space travel is becoming a reality. Now people who have longed to go into space can buy a ticket, if they've got the cash. But are they healthy enough to make the voyage?
October 16, 2012 Astronomers have finally discovered a planet orbiting Alpha Centauri, the nearest star to the Sun. At a mere 4.4 light years away, scientists have long hoped that a planet would be found around this closest of stellar neighbors.
September 26, 2012 The notion that the Big Bang is like an exploding bomb is completely wrong. But what, then, lies beyond the edge of space? Can we ever know whether the Universe is infinite?
An artist's rendering shows a rocket-powered descent stage lowering the one-ton Curiosity rover to the Mars surface.
August 15, 2012 NASA's Curiosity rover will soon begin to search for signs of life, past or present, on the red planet. But can we make sense of life in strange places? And if we don't find it, what will it mean to us?
An artists rendition of an interstellar "Bussard Ram-Jet" starship.
July 31, 2012 Should we be sending emissaries (and colonists) to the stars. Yes! Just remember that those who leave won't really be coming back.
July 25, 2012 Contributor Adam Frank has an op-ed in The New York Times that argues we're not going to be traveling the cosmos any time soon, if ever.
July 10, 2012 Have we heard from ET? Even if we did, that doesn't tell us anything about UFOs. Still, it can't hurt to try and talk to them, right? Commentator Adam Frank share his message for beings from beyond our Earth.
June 6, 2012 Can we explain the origin of all things from nothing? First we need to understand what nothing means and how the human mind creates.
May 31, 2012 The first commercial flight to the International Space Station is wrapping up today.
The SpaceX Dragon module, held by the International Space Station's robotic arm.
May 30, 2012 Should we send humans or robots into outer space? With private interests taking over the space race, it's hard to see us out of the game.
An image of the Dragon spacecraft, taken earlier today with a thermal camera aboard the International Space Station.
May 25, 2012 The historic first mission to dock a commercial spacecraft at the International Space Station is happening today, and is being webcast around the world.
May 23, 2012 Can we distinguish between ultra-advanced aliens and gods? Crazy as it may sound, commentator Marcelo Gleiser says this line of reasoning is sound and blurs the boundary between the natural and the supernatural.
The Falcon 9 SpaceX rocket lifted off from space launch complex 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Fla., early Tuesday.
May 22, 2012 A robotic cargo ship owned by SpaceX, a private company, is ferrying supplies to the space station. NASA is turning over routine flights to the commercial sector so that it can focus on other missions.
SpaceX rocket Falcon 9 at Cape Canaveral in Florida was scheduled to launch Saturday morning, but aborted just before liftoff.
Roberto Gonzalez/Getty Images
May 21, 2012 The unmanned, docking mission to the International Space Station is intended show that the private company is ready to haul cargo for NASA.
NPR thanks our sponsors
Become an NPR sponsor