Saturday, March 19, 2016

Where We've Been in Space



Beautiful Poster Shows Entire History of Space Exploration

Image: Pop Chart Lab
nerdist.com  Posted by Michael Walsh on March 13, 2016

The public’s imagination may be focused on NASA‘s work towards sending a manned mission to Mars, but we’ve been exploring the mysteries of our cosmic neighbors for a long time now. In fact, there have been so many probes and ships sent into space that it can be hard to keep all of them straight–what they were, where they went, when they left and arrived, and even what their purpose was.

Fortunately, tracking our history of space exploration just got a whole lot easier (and a lot more stylish) thanks to this beautiful, detailed poster that charts all of our successful solar excursions.

This hand-illustrated, 39″ by 27″ chart comes from the folks at Pop Chart Lab, and it is a color-coded chart that “traces the trajectories of every orbiter, lander, rover, flyby, and impactor to ever slip the surly bonds of Earth’s orbit and successfully complete its mission.”

Starting with the Soviet Union’s Luna 2 in 1959, the first spacecraft to successfully reach the moon, up until DSCOVR’s launch in 2015 from Cape Canaveral, the piece has “a truly astronomical array of over 100 exploratory instruments in all.”

You can already start pouring over it at the site, where you can zoom in to see all the incredible details. Even better, the poster is only 38 dollars, and will be ready to ship on March 18th, but you can pre-order it now.

This chart makes the New Horizons trip to Pluto seem even more incredible.

It’s fun to fantasize about interstellar travel, but the work we’ve done in the relatively short time we’ve been exploring our solar system is, much like this poster celebrating it, quite beautiful.

Which of these crafts are you most interested in finding on this chart? Explore our comments section with your ideas.

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