The satellite company Planet announced Wednesday that it's planning to go public via a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC).
Why it matters: Planet operates the largest fleet of Earth-observing satellites, with more than 190 spacecraft taking photos of the world each day.
Fifty-one percent of Americans believe UFOs reported by military personnel are likely evidence of intelligent alien life, according to a new poll released by Pew last week.
Why it matters: Questions about whether smart aliens have come to visit Earth have been asked for decades, and these results show that curiosity — which can sometimes verge into conspiracy theory — persists.
When Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson take flight aboard the rockets their companies built, the hopes and dreams of a burgeoning industry will be flying with them as well.
Why it matters: Accidents or errors on these high-profile flights from Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin could derail their plans — and possibly affect others' plans — for commercial space tourism and travel.
Two Chinese astronauts on Sunday made the first spacewalk outside China's new space station core module Tianhe to set up equipment on a 15-meter robotic arm.
State of play: Astronauts Liu Boming's and Tang Hongbo's spacewalk was streamed on local media. They were supported by a third crew member, Nie Haisheng, who stayed inside the cabin.
Virgin Galactic announced Thursday plans to launch its billionaire founder Richard Branson into space on July 11.
Why it matters: The date is nine days before Jeff Bezos, founder of Virgin Galactic competitor Blue Origin, is set to take off for space.
A newfound white dwarf star 130 light-years away is the most massive and smallest ever discovered, according to a new study.
Why it matters: The star — thought to be the result of two white dwarfs smacking into one another and merging — can act as a laboratory for astronomers to learn more about how extreme objects in the universe evolve.
Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos has invited Wally Funk — one of the women aviators who passed the Mercury astronaut tests in the 1960s — to join him and two others on the company's first crewed trip to the edge of space.
Why it matters: Funk's turn as an astronaut is years in the making, after the Mercury 13 — a group of women who mastered the same tests as NASA astronauts in the 1960s as part of a private initiative — were passed over by NASA.
Virgin Orbit launched seven satellites from three different customers to space on Wednesday.
Why it matters: Virgin Orbit is entering an increasingly crowded market of launchers hoping to take advantage of the growing demand by nations and other companies to launch small satellites to orbit in the coming years.
Space Perspective wants to take paying customers on flights into the upper atmosphere, 20 miles above the planet, and the company is ready to start selling tickets.
Why it matters: The company is stepping into an increasingly crowded market, with multiple space tourism companies — like Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin — expected to stage their first commercial flights with passengers this year.
Newly released videos reveal China's Mars rover roaming the world and the spacecraft's daring descent to the Red Planet's surface.
Why it matters: The rover — named Zhurong — is the China National Space Administration's first to explore Mars, making it the only other space agency aside from NASA to successfully operate a rover on the planet.