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Sci-fi movies used to be based on imag­i­na­tions and dreams but more re­cently, films like Pas­sen­gers (2016) seem like a prob­a­ble so­lu­tion to the fu­ture when Earth is no longer a vi­able planet to live on. Ad­vance­ment in tech­nol­ogy and sci­ence re­search not only helps us im­prove lives on Earth, but also builds on the knowl­edge of space travel. This is­sue, we look at the lat­est break­throughs and dis­cus­sions in NASA and ESA. What are some com­mon prob­lems our body might strug­gle with in space, and what is needed for us to set­tle among the stars (p32).

Within the movie, pas­sen­gers had their body tem­per­a­tures low­ered to slow down bi­o­log­i­cal pro­cesses and put into an in­duced hi­ber­na­tion mode. This tech­nique is cur­rently in dis­cus­sion as a way to put as­tro­nauts to sleep in longdis­tance space flights. Al­ter­na­tively, there is the method of cryo­genic preser­va­tion as a way of “cheat­ing death”. Peo­ple are pay­ing large sums of money to pre­serve their bod­ies in hope that fu­ture sci­en­tific pro­gres­sion will al­low them to have a chance of wak­ing up and liv­ing in an­other era. We look at the pros and cons of this tech­nol­ogy (p52).

Not many of us may know this but the 2017 Break­through Prize Cer­e­mony took place last De­cem­ber and, amongst many world sci­en­tist and lau­re­ates, a Sin­ga­porean stu­dent had the op­por­tu­nity to re­ceive a prize on the cov­eted stage. Read more about her story on (p26).

That’s all for now, keep wan­der­ing your minds and en­joy the is­sue.

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