A $100-million startup shares incredible plan to propel spacecraft with giant lasers

Breakthrough Starshot is moving ahead with an audacious vision for space exploration.

  • The Breakthrough Starshot initiative was co-founded by Stephen Hawking.
  • The project raised $100 million and is moving ahead with extensive research.
  • The goal of Starshot is to send tiny "StarChip" spacecraft to explore neighboring star systems.
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Massive Poster Details Humanity's Missions Through the Universe So Far

A massive chart of humankind’s 113 spacecraft so far and where they’ve gone.

Chart of Cosmic Exploration

By our count, there are 113 spacecraft in this image. It’s a catalogue of all of the vehicles launched into space so far, from the U.S.S.R’s Luna 2 in 1959 to the U.S.’s DSCOVR in 2015. Every orbiter, lander, rover, flyby, and impactor is here, along with its trajectory. It’s actually an image of a physical poster from PopChart Lab that any space maven could spend some quality time with.

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