Volume 86 Issue 30 | p. 67
Issue Date: July 28, 2008

Sunshine Sails

Propelled through space by the pressure of photons, solar sails need to be lightweight, thin, and durable
Department: Science & Technology

ON A REMOTE ISLAND in the South Pacific, a black box the size of a loaf of bread houses what could be the future of space flight. The precious cargo is the National Aeronautics & Space Administration's NanoSail-D, a small satellite equipped with a solar sail that's scheduled to launch into orbit aboard SpaceX's Falcon 1 rocket sometime between July 29 and Aug. 6. If all goes according to plan, three days . . .

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