Google in Gagarin's footsteps? The new face of the space race (E40)

­April 12, 2011 will mark 50 years since Yuri Gagarin broke through the Earth's atmosphere to become the first man in space. Within a decade, man had been to the moon. But did the space race die with the Cold War?

Technology Update finds a rebirth in science and engineering that's reaching for the stars. New space centers are opening with new launchers to fit. Mars' moon Phobos could in fact be a captured asteroid. Private companies have orbital ambitions for former Soviet hardware. Neutron beam detectors might help us find water ice in the lunar shadows. Russian engines shoot the rockets of their former American rivals into space. And Google wants to pay somebody $25 million to put its flag on the moon. In the words of Gagarin – Poekhali! (Liftoff!) – on Technology Update. We've got the future covered.

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