PLEDGE NOW
The 100 Year Starship

Dr. Mae Jemison was the first black woman in space. Now, she’s leading a wildly ambitious project: to achieve interstellar travel in the next 100 years. She’s with us.

Rendering of Daedalus starship, art by Adrian Mann

Rendering of Daedalus starship, art by Adrian Mann

Think Star Trek and you won’t be far off. A new Pentagon project is putting out seed money for interstellar travel. Humans, rambling around among the stars. It’s called the 100 Year Starship project. It’s as wildly ambitious as just about anything you can imagine.

The spaceship, its energy source, its passengers’ survival – full-blown or just as DNA… all giant challenges. Not to mention that we’re sort of broke and not even flying space shuttles right now. Leader of the new effort: astronaut Mae Jemison, the first black woman in space. She’s with us.

This hour, On Point: the 100 Year Starship.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Dr. Mae Jemison, a physician and NASA astronaut, she was the first black woman to travel in space. She was recently selected to head the 100 Year Starship project, an independent, non-governmental, long-term initiative for human interstellar flight.

Paul Gilster, a technology writer and futurist, he blogs at Centauri Dreams.

From Tom’s Reading List

Space.com “Star Trek’s bold vision of the starship Enterprise manned by a diverse crew may no longer just be science fiction — especially with the first woman astronaut of color heading the real-life project. The U.S. military has chosen Mae Jemison’s nonprofit foundation to receive half a million dollars in seed funding to help turn the 100-Year Starship into reality.”

BBC “Today, Mae Jemison may be best known as the first black female astronaut to travel to space, but someday she could be known for something much more monumental. That’s because she is now at the helm of what could well be the most audacious project ever imagined: a Pentagon-funded effort meant to lead within 100 years to a spaceship that will take humans to the stars.”

Video: NASA Announcement

Pete Worden, Director of NASA’s Ames Center, announces the establishment of a “100 Year Spaceship” program: a DARPA-funded project to develop spacecraft capable of traveling to points far beyond our own solar system.

Photos

Check out this NASA photo of Mae Jemison on the space shuttle.

Mae_Jemison_

Mae_Jemison_

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
May 27, 2015
Two persons are reflected in the FIFA logo at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland, Wednesday, May 27, 2015. Swiss prosecutors opened criminal proceedings into FIFA's awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, only hours after seven soccer officials were arrested Wednesday pending extradition to the U.S. in a separate probe of "rampant, systemic, and deep-rooted" corruption. (AP)

Top officials at soccer’s international governing body FIFA arrested in Switzerland today on charges of racketeering, wire fraud, money laundering and bribery. We’ll dig in.

May 27, 2015
The logo from the new film, "(Dis)Honesty," which is also the logo for the Dishonesty Project. (The Dishonesty Project)

Are we natural born liars? Is it human to lie? Inside the new documentary, ” (Dis)Honesty: The Truth About Lies.”

RECENT
SHOWS
May 26, 2015
The saola is an exceedingly rare mammal found in the mountains of Southeast Asia. (Wikicommons)

Endangered species and the search for one of the world’s rarest creatures deep into the wilds of central Laos.

 
May 26, 2015
Blogger and activist Pamela Geller speaks at a conference she organized entitled “Stop Islamization of America,” in New York on Sept. 11, 2012. (AP)

Two new books on free speech–one by a former New York Times correspondent, the other a Fox News contributor. They don’t see eye to eye—and tell us why.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
A Former Bike Gang Member Explains "The Life"
Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Larry called in from Lawrenceburg, KY and told us he was once a member of the Pagan’s Motorcycle Club, a mid-Atlantic biker gang. He didn’t sugar coat the facts as he explained the draw of the brotherhood and what makes the outlaw motorcycle corner the underworld go round.

More »
1 Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: May 15, 2015
Friday, May 15, 2015

We cancel a few hours and suddenly all of you get convinced of a global radio conspiracy! Plus, dragon zoos.

More »
1 Comment
 
Caller: ‘It Doesn’t Always Turn Out Okay’
Wednesday, May 13, 2015

One caller shares her own story of an extremely premature birth. Her daughter, born at 22 1/2 weeks in 2012, was taken off life support after seven days.

More »
Comment