* Posts by Annihilator

3076 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Windows 10: Buy cheap, buy twice, right? Buy FREE ... buy FOREVER

Annihilator
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Free

Until you try to change the handle and the brush of your broom in a year's time. Then it's far from clear what you're position is with regards to a Win 10 product key.

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NASA: 'Closest thing yet to ANOTHER EARTH' - FOUND

Annihilator
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Re: Back of Envelope Calculations

Not sure where you got 1.6 from? The mass is 5x that of earth, the radius is 1.6. Surface gravity is G*m/r^2. Gives you ~19m/s^2, or roughly twice our planet's 9.8.

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Annihilator
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Re: Highly elliptical orbit

Near circular orbits exist because they're more stable, particularly in what is likely to be a multi-planet system.

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Contactless card fraud? Easy. All you need is an off-the-shelf scanner

Annihilator
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Re: Who's laughing now???

"Question - do RFID-proof wallets set off airport metal detectors?"

Yes. But really, just put all your belongings in the little tray they give you, metal or not. It's just easier!

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NASA briefing in HOURS: 'We are upon the CUSP of finding ANOTHER EARTH'

Annihilator
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Happy

Re: Or a space mirror?

Karl Pilkington wanted to put a mirror on the moon - so he could look up and see his reflection.

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Scammers going after iOS as fake crash reports hit UK

Annihilator
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Re: A Fix

"It just works"

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Comet-invader Philae goes silent, mothership Rosetta forced to retreat

Annihilator
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Re: Was it ever planned to be operating this close to the Sun?

Not sure I understand this one? The "tail" is indicative of there being more solar energy collected, surely you'd expect (as the team have) that the closer to the sun, the more energy the lander gets - it's why it came back to life in the first place.

The comet's orbit is outside of Earth's, so it's not like it will be completely burning up. Although it's possible the lander will shift due to the changes on the comet surface as its ice begins to melt and break up.

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Did speeding American manhole cover beat Sputnik into space? Top boffin speaks to El Reg

Annihilator
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Re: Orbit?

"So IF that things survived passage through the Earth's atmosphere (and it seems to me that the probability of that happening at that velocity is rather small), it was headed for interstellar space, and would have got there well before Voyager."

Surely that depends on what direction it was going in comparison to our orbit. If it were facing the opposite way to our orbital trajectory (launched at 6am or 6pm, not sure which), it would have lost orbital 'speed' and effectively moved to a lower solar orbit.

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Neil Young yanks music from streaming services: 'Worst audio in history'

Annihilator
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Re: Neil's fooling only himself

"A good song is still a good song regardless of the audio quality."

That explains why the chavs at the back of the bus seem to like listening to their music out of their phone's speaker...

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Annihilator
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Thanks for that link 1980s_coder. Best analogy I've ever read:

"In our hypothetical Wide Spectrum Video craze, consider a fervent group of Spectrophiles who believe these limits aren't generous enough. They propose that video represent not only the visible spectrum, but also infrared and ultraviolet"

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Run Windows 10 on your existing PC you say, Microsoft? Hmmm.

Annihilator
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"My brother's laptop (my old laptop) is 1.2ghz and works fluidly on Windows 10"

You'll notice it was the RAM that drew the "no chance!" comment, not the processor speed. Processor speed is utterly meaningless these days anyway - you can get a mobile Core i7 running at 1.2GHz today, which would rather piss over the same-frequency Athlon XP I spent a fair penny on back in the early-2000's

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Account at HSBC? BAD LUCK, no iPhone bonk-banking for you

Annihilator
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Re: NFC? No thanks.

"I am personally at a loss to explain why anyone would pay upwards of £400 (conservatively) to replace an NFC enabled credit card which most people do not want either (especially not those that are aware of the risks)."

Because they're not buying their phone to replace their credit card, it's just a bonus feature? Do you honestly think people rushed out to buy an iPhone 6 based purely on the upcoming Apple Pay?

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Annihilator
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WTF?

Re: I was going to leave HSBC, but now I'm not so sure....

Delivering 2 weeks late is a "boycott" these days? I must remember that next time my project delivers late!

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The Great Barrier Relief – Inside London's heavy metal and concrete defence act

Annihilator
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Re: Silly Question Time

It's also an exothermic reaction. For example, if the Hoover Dam had been poured in one continuous pour, it would still be emitting heat today.

Concrete (or cement technically) actually *needs* water to set.

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Q. Why did Nintendo force GitHub to take down an emulator? A. It was stuffed with ROMs

Annihilator
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I do find it odd, that the sytem and games were discontinued over 8 years ago, yet it's still illegal to have downloaded versions. Where is the loss of income for Nintendo on these emulator ROMs?

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Samsung's latest 2TB SSDs have big hats, but where's the cattle?

Annihilator
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"A 6 or 7-year warranty sounds good, but many users will be switching to faster replacement drives with more capacity before the warranty period ends, such is the pace of SSD technology development."

I don't want to be all "640K is enough for anyone" about it, but I'm not convinced that people would be replacing SSDs to get a speedier model. I've been running an 80GB drive as the boot disk for the past 5 years and have no intentions of replacing it.

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Smartphones are ludicrously under-used, so steal their brains

Annihilator
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Re: 'Right under our noses'

And is that pocket *above* your nose?..

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Mars rover Opportunity shuns dodgy flash chips, relies on RAM

Annihilator
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Thumb Up

Re: Three months....

@Dom3 - spot on. It would actually be rather difficult (and stoopid) to design something to *only* work for 3 months. For it to be (as close as realistically possible) guaranteed to be operating after 3 months, you would expect its degradation to be in line with the decay curve you're describing.

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Annihilator
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Happy

Re: Those panels are asking for "wash me"

Best message I've seen scrawled in a dirty van was "also available in white!!"

Chuckled when I saw that one.

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NASA's New Horizon probe rudely fires its thruster at gnome planet

Annihilator
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Paris Hilton

Genuine question

"Without the course correction, New Horizons would have been 20 seconds late"

Late for what?

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Facebook unveils SECRET logo furtle – in a TWEET

Annihilator
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Meh

Re: You have to wonder how much they spent

"I'd say something of the order of £50,000"

I genuinely think you've missed a zero off that, if not two.

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Cambridge boffins: STOP the rush to 5G. We just don't need it

Annihilator
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Re: Why can't we have both?

"I feel there's nothing wrong with preparing 5G and roll out 4G everywhere."

Yes, the way this was written you'd think they were mutually exclusive options. As if the boffins designing 5G standards are the same engineers who are out there malletting new 4G masts into the ground.

5G won't be ready for another 5 years. It's the equivalent of not buying a new CPU, knowing that Intel are working on the next gen chips at the moment.

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We forget NOTHING, the Beeb thunders at Europe

Annihilator
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Re: And so it happens ...

Nice patronising post. But I'd argue Google isn't a search aggregator, it's a search engine. It may be a news aggregator, granted.

I'd also say, so what if people tell you they are insured with comparethemarket (though I doubt they do)? They're effectively the broker and long before they existed, people would use their broker's name to describe their insurance. Besides, even more people would say they were insured by Direct Line, when really it's underwritten by UK Insurance Limited. Lloyds home insurance are often rebranded Zurich or Axa products.

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SpaceX to blast Microsoft's HoloLens visors into SPAAAAACE

Annihilator
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Re: Does hololens use positional information from the headset to change the viewpoint?

I wondered that. Perhaps they're only using them as video relays as mentioned, and the "instructionals" are projected using markers to gain positional information. Inertials on their own would be terrible.

Although, it wouldn't be hard to rig up some sort of mini-GPS system in a known environment like the ISS. 3 or 4 synced pulses around the lab, 3 receivers on the headset.

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Guy puts 1990s MacOS 7 on an Apple Watch – without jailbreaking it

Annihilator
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"the PowerMac/Performa lines that you may remember disabling the enemy mothership in Independence Day."

Of course. I remember at the time remarking how it was lucky the aliens' ships were Mac compatible when most hardware you could buy in Dixons at the time, wasn't.

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SpaceX gets ready to crash barge-land ANOTHER rocket

Annihilator
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Meh

" the rockets could then be re-used, leading to considerable cost savings in terms of ongoing launches"

While I've no doubt this is the aim, I recall the same thing being promised of the space shuttle programme...

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RBS sticks it to customers once again as IT woes continue

Annihilator
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Re: Consequence

All banks report everything to Experian on a monthly basis. Generally it's minimum balance, max balance, on-time payments. It's not for the reporting bank (or Experian) to judge what is good or bad, just have the facts. The company that subsequently read the report are the ones who choose how to judge that behaviour. You're thinking about referring to debt collection/recovery (either internal or external), not what I'm talking about.

As to whether it's the straw to break the camel's back, then yes, that would be RBS' fault. Customers on the edge of a mortgage approval can be tipped over it - there has to be a cusp somewhere, and so one missed payment can make the difference.

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Annihilator
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Consequence

So, they claim they'll make sure no-one's out of pocket. But will they fix the trail of credit reporting problems? Hint - they can't.

Scenario: mortgage payment from RBS current account to Santander mortgage goes awol (or rather, payment into RBS current account means that direct debit to Santander mortgage bounces). Santander report to Experian et al that you've missed a mortgage payment. RBS can't correct that notification, only Santander can. Trying to get them to actually do that on RBS' say-so will be a fricking nightmare, and down to the customer to do.

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US is the world's botnet mothership, says Level 3

Annihilator
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Headmaster

Continent vs country

"US the world's botnet mothership"

Actually it says "An average of 20 percent of the command and control servers we tracked were based in North America". This includes Canada and Mexico among others. Might not be statistically relevant though, I don't know.

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Assange™ celebrates third year in Ecuadorian embassy broom closet

Annihilator
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Re: Bull

"British courts may take a dim view of bail jumping, but would they spend millions of pounds to guard the embassy if you or I was dodging rape charges in Sweden?"

If you or I were popping up on local news with press conferences every month or so to show off how we were jumping bail, I think they would show an interest, yes. Most bail jumpers don't do that.

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Annihilator
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It's wooden dollars. The constable has to account for their share of the Met infrastructure (cars, IT, HR, offices, utilities etc etc), not to mention NI contributions, pensions, overtime. A staff member in organisations that large "cost" easily 5x their base salary.

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Sun like it hot: Philae comet probe wakes up, phones home again

Annihilator
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Re: Not Necking Celery

I suspect that one of them will subsequently be scattered across it as its orbit decays. Philae on the other hand, will potentially be a glorious monument to ESA. Unless it becomes part of the comet's tail? Anyone know if it weighs enough to resist sublimation?

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The insidious danger of the lone wolf control freak sysadmin

Annihilator
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Trollface

"This guy – let’s call him “Tim”"

Cos that's his name?...

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Microsoft finally finishes its PowerPC emulator

Annihilator
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Re: Rosetta

Beat me to it, but worth noting that Rosetta only worked in basic instances. "Beefy" stuff wouldn't run (games, Photoshop etc).

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Cortana threatens to blow away ESC key

Annihilator
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Paris Hilton

Re: I'll remap that key.

"You screw with a bog standard key to install a gimick in it's place, I'll remap it back to what it's been since before your company came into existence."

Or, you could just not buy a Toshiba. Not sure what's stranger, Toshiba mapping the Esc key to Cortana, or you buying a Toshiba just to angrily re-map it.

"Hello Tosh, gotta Toshiba?"

"Yes, to keep my wrath warm for some reason"

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Annihilator
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Happy

"Also try Alt-Esc and Alt-Shift-Esc combos"

I'm style over substance - it's the Win+Tab combo for me every time. I'm a sucker for Aero.

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ISS 'nauts quit orbiter and aim for Kazakhstan splashdown

Annihilator
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Re: Splashdown!

"That's what they did for the Apollo missions. When did that change?"

It hasn't changed, it's a Soyuz capsule, it's Russian and does ground landings (it can do water landings, but only as contingency).

Water landings aren't as beneficial as they might seem. They're still quite a violent thump and carry the risk of sinking - plus the recovery operations becomes a lot more time-critical for that reason.

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I block, you block, we all block Twitter shock schlock

Annihilator
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Unhappy

You say "better and simpler", they would most likely say "more expensive and could infer we're responsible for content". So you can imagine how quickly they'll swerve this option.

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Oh, shoppin’ HELL: I’m in the supermarket of the DAMNED

Annihilator
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Re: Some Dutch shops..

"Also, why is it that only people in the UK seem to have a problem with automated check-outs?"

I find that outside of satirical articles and stand-up routines from early-2008, they work just fine.

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One USB plug to rule them all? That's sensible, but no...

Annihilator
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Boffin

Re: Just make it coloured coded

Already got that (to an extent). Blue = USB3. Yellow = "powered USB" (on a Thinkpad anyway).

Besides - colour coding isn't particularly DDA compliant?

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Feds: Bloke 'HACKED PLANE controls' – from his PASSENGER seat

Annihilator
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Re: correction Christophe

"That what's the feebs are saying he did."

@Gordon 10 - actually that's what the Feds are saying *he* said he did.

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Annihilator
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Headmaster

"He stated that he thereby caused the one of the airplane engines to climb"

He might have caused one of the engines to throttle up, but an engine doesn't "climb" by itself.

It might be more accurate to say that either he:

1) caused the engine to throttle up, causing the aircraft to yaw as it pulled one wing ahead of the other.

2) managed to get a wing to climb (effectivel banking the aircraft), which could have induced a slight lateral stall which could be described as a sideways movement.

But then again, the only person that says any of this happened is him. I'm not convinced.

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Hacker 3D prints device that can crack a combo lock in 30 seconds

Annihilator
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Pint

Re: Analog Security

"Given that the geek who owns this device will probably be looking at the locker door from the inside, it will be rather difficult to access the lock dial."

Sir, I owe you a pint, and you owe me a new keyboard.

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Nintendo to revive long-dead 'World Championships' contest

Annihilator
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Angel

Re: Another bit of idiot naming...

Ah, I see you're not familiar with the US habit of claiming the world. See:

World Series

WWE

Superbowl winners referred to as "World Champions"

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PHOTON SPACE SAIL successfully Kickstarted into orbit

Annihilator
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Trollface

"one-fourth the thickness of an average trash bag"

Or "a quarter", as we regular people call it.

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Three's 'Home Signal' femtocells fail, restore mobile black spots

Annihilator
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So the 2 people I know had to buy one. Plus, who's paying for the lecky and broadband it needs to operate?

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Annihilator
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Facepalm

So not only can they not provide a mobile service, they can't keep the extension that customers have to buy and operate themselves running.

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Mars needs TRAFFIC COP to stop probe prangs, says NASA

Annihilator
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Boffin

2D

"Many of the orbiters' orbits intersect: the image at the top of this story shows that India's MOM, for example, cuts across the orbit of three other craft and Mars' two moons."

It doesn't show anything, as it's a 2D projection of a 4D system. For example, MOM could be orbiting at a 45 degree angle to the Martian system's plane and passing around Phobos and Deimos.

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NASA's Messenger craft SMASHES into Mercury: See ya later, alien crater

Annihilator
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Re: Why crash on the far side?

It wasn't particularly maneuvarable, plus it's not always possible to predict precisely where it will hit in advance (the impact was the result of a gradual decay, not that they pointed the engines 'downwards' and plummeted straight in). There was presumably more science in prolonging the mission - the ony thing we didn't see is the impact. There also wouldn't have been any data transmissions (it's not a real-time camera broadcasting back, it takes pictures, processes, then transmits at the appropriate time).

Spectral data of impact - I assume we'd have needed it to be "side-on" to the planet from our perspective, and possibly in front of the sun to have something to read.

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Annihilator
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Boffin

Re: Ran out of fuel and crashed?

There aren't really any stable orbits around Mercury due to its proximity to the sun and Mercury's extremely elliptical orbit. In this scenario it's closer to a 3-body orbital system and MESSENGER needed to do a lot of stationkeeping to keep itself in the orbit it was in.

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