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Printing On The Moon & Black Hole Observations

Clavius Crater on the Moon. Photo: NASA/USGS
Clavius Crater on the Moon. Photo: NASA/USGS

It takes a lot of fuel to send things into space. As humans look to head into deep space, like to the moon and Mars, engineers are figuring out ways to lower the weight of deep space launches by building supplies in space.

Redwire is one of those commercial companies developing technology to build things in space -- called in-situ -- and has already demonstrated the ability to 3D print tools on the International Space Station.

Now the company is looking towards a future moon mission and testing its 3D printers using simulated moon dust on the space station.

We’ll talk with Redwire’s chief technology officer Michael Snyder about a mission launching this week to test out its Additive Manufacturing Facility currently installed on the space station by loading the toaster oven sized 3D printer with simulated moon dust.

Then, earlier this year scientists observed a black hole gobbling up a neutron star -- the first time an observation like this was ever made. It was done using gravitational wave observations which are changing the way we understand the universe.

We’ll talk with our panel of expert scientists from the University of Central Florida Addie Dove, Jim Cooney and Josh Colwell about the observation and why seeing something like this is so difficult.

Brendan Byrne is WMFE's Assistant News Director, managing the day-to-day operations of the WMFE newsroom, editing daily news stories, and managing WMFE's internship program.

Byrne also hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration.