56 posts • joined Saturday 22nd August 2009 03:44 GMT
She made a mis-steak.
Re: Come in Major Eadon!
I feel this way too. His career--running his own space program and developing awesome, new-tech cars--is straight from an 11 year old's dream about their own future. And damn it, he's succeeding. He is my inspiration.
That's already happening...you wouldn't believe how many kids in my son's elementary school are named "Aiden" and "Preston."
Re: Hold on to your hats or better duck altogether
We've got erudite rocket science professors giving lectures on how this works and why it matters.
Also a few retards weighing in too.
Re: Looking at the ion drive and solar sail options
See the recent article in this website about using ground-based lasers to help de-orbit space junk. Perhaps one could use the same system to nudge satellites out of the way of an impending collision. As you say, it takes just a small nudge a few days in advance to do the trick.
Re: Alternatively you could name your servers
>Here they used Pallas, Zeus, and Poseidon. I got some blank stares from the CIT crowd (Philistines, the lot of them ;-) ) when I suggested Offler, Om, and Nuggan
>I'll get me coat!
Ahem, Quezovercoatl. As in, "I'll get me overcoatl."
Feynman lecturing on Newton's Laws
Regardless of whether I already knew about Newton's Laws before going into university, I would rather learn those laws from Feynman than anyone else. I'd love to hear his take on them, and how they connect to everything (physics, history, etc.). And you don't get Feynman at most high schools.
"Nearly 50 years ago" -- Sorry, I was born days after Apollo 11 and I'm not that close to 50...the date range for Saturn V flights was more like 40-45 years ago.
"Plummeted into the sea at 5000 mph" -- The terminal velocity for a spent stage 1 booster would be much closer to 500 mph than 5000.
Like something Sagan wrote about
Seeing the colors and composition of life on a planet, from a great distance...if this technique works, it will be the next best thing to actually hearing aliens with the SETI program. What could be more inspirational to would-be space explorers?
We're opening up a whole new chapter of science, one that astronomers and planetary scientists have been dying to read for as long as those sciences existed.
Re: beep beep beep beep beep
This is a good idea from the world of high-powered rocketry (engine class H and up). No radios, GPS or other fancy gadgets needed...just start hiking in the direction you saw the parachute descending, and listen for the beeps. Cheap, light, and simple.
" at an altitude of 120kms" -- Huh?
Yes, right. Assuming they did orbit at that altitude, that's hardly a stable orbit. Not sure it would even complete one full orbit at that altitude. A proper LEO needs to be 150km or higher, preferably 200km+
And even for a suborbital flight, an adequate heat shield would be needed for the very sharp and intense decel, maybe up to 12 g's?
If the testing period is now just 10 hours, why not use real people instead of potatoes? Just grab 200 loafers from around the halls of Boeing for an extra long meeting, offer donuts and unlimited coffee, no need for taters.
I keep getting bowled over by the stunning quality of this rover's photos. It's as if they set it loose in New Mexico or something. You can easily imagine being there.
Studying the images from dozens of past space exploration missions, I've come to appreciate the haziness / graininess / lack of contrast as being par for the course, given where the image was taken, i.e., deep space or some far-out planet or moon. But now I've learned the truth: those earlier images mostly just suck. (Well, for human eyes anyway.)
I'd love to send newer rovers and probes back to our old stomping grounds...the moon, Venus, etc. What a difference the newer cameras would make.
Spaghetti of gas
Sounds like what happens when you eat high fiber spaghetti.
Good and bad news
Wonderful that they had one engine out and carried on. But I'd be very concerned at the in-flight failure rate of the Merlin. Which is, with 4 flights and one engine out (of 36) , standing at just under 3%. I'd be much happier with that figure down well under 1%.
Another inflight failure, if it were to come soon after this one...and NASA may begin to lose confidence?
Best. Job. Ever.
That is all.
Where the women look masculine, and the men look even more masculine.
Sounds kinda like Prairie Home Companion to me.
That's a pretty good solution...IIRC solar wind causes the orbit to wander to one side, long term, so eventually the perigee will dip low enough to pick up drag, which will circularize the orbit then, very soon, the item will deorbit. Nice, passive thing, a solar sail. No fiddling with fuel, boosters, or giving the item a big quick push. Just a bigger solar wind effect (over years) to hasten the deorbit time.
I thought it was "Pr0n" in all languages.
Re: Why so slow?
They're exploring, not commuting.
>>"prevent the calamity of inadvertently watching an in-flight movie".
Just put on an eyepatch, like Captain Hook. Then put a patch on the other eye.
Re: Why on Mars didn't they...
The skycrane/rocket flew off 400 km before crashing, which indicates to me that it DID use up all the hydrazine. But there would probably be excess fuel or oxidizer, both of which are nasty stuff, so the drivers are staying away from the crash site.
It had to be noted. The same figure appears twice in today's news...
1. Wall street firm loses $440 Million thanks to bad software.
2. SpaceX receives $440 Million from NASA.
My very sketchy research gives me the idea that a 500 m PHO such as this, if it were to strike earth, may yield an energy release equivalent to 3 Gigatons, or 60 Tsar Bombas. Or a "9" on the Torino Scale. Not a civilization-ender, but certainly a city-killer.
Vandenberg is often used for polar orbit launches (think spy sats etc.). Heavy lifter can lift a very large spy sat. Having a polar launch facility in CA (near their main factory in LA) makes sense.
Re: This Elon chap
I'm sure you noticed Mr. Musk's cameo appearance in Iron Man 2?
Best idea I've heard in years: matching the first major commercial launcher+spacecraft company up with the first commercial space station company.
Skip the suborbital flights, let's visit the Orbital Hilton!
Re: Interesting concept
Writing from Seattle...
Neal S wrote his essay after being witness to the longer history of light rail here. The Light Rail is itself the less-attractive option we'll all have to settle for, after the much more attractive monorail project got canceled. The monorail would have had a smaller footprint (being up on columns) than the light rail, and be built much faster, finally giving the Puget Sound area a decent mass-transit option. (Other than buses.) But monorail was eventually killed by local politicians over the objections of the public. (There had been numerous public votes where each time the city voters said "yes" to the monorail.) Light rail must have just meant more $$ hence it was kept while monorail shelved.
Oh, and regarding spoiling a lake, it's already "spoiled" by two very large floating bridges with multiple spans, for two major highways, which have been in place for decades. We are in the process of building a whole new span for highway 520. Which would do its damage, regardless of the addition of light rail (which is supposed to reduce dependance on cars) or not.
Stagnation...we got it.
It already exists...and is referred to as potential energy, a function of a mass raise to a height. Have you ever pulled the weights up on a cuckoo clock? Or swung a weighted pendulum? Or climbed the stairs? In all three cases you're putting energy into something, your height above ground. Gravity gives it back to you when you come down.
I had a great object lesson on terminal velocity the other day. A model rocket I was flying with a flight computer (accelerometer+altimeter) lost its nosecone on descent. The plastic nosecone fell from hundreds of feet up, with the flight computer (size of a keyfob) attached. I found the nosecone assembly lying unharmed on the grass, and the computer dutifully reported its descent speed was 29 mph. (Under the parachute the usual descent speed is between 10 and 15 mph.)
If it had hit you it would not have hurt much...just like being hit by a whiffle ball at most.
No, Richard's idea was good, and won't junk up LEO: If some of the waste were ejected out the back at high enough speed, it would boost the ISS's orbit. But then the orbit of the ejected waste' would be considerably lower energy and will within a very few orbits burn up in the atmosphere, where it was destined to go anyway.
Anything lower than the ISS will not stay in orbit long...the ISS's orbit is so low that it needs to boost periodically (so much atmospheric drag) to avoid the fate of the garbage.
Maybe I am missing something too...if iOS already has Siri, then why not develop Trapit for Android?
Happy Birthday mate - I too was born a few weeks after Neil and Buzz set foot on the moon. Our ages might be identical.
I've been a manned spaceflight fan all my life, but never saw a launch. Tried to, though, last November, journeying all the way down to Cape Canaveral to see the Discovery go. Unfortunately its launch was delayed to Feb as we all know, and I couldn't afford a second trip.
I've been sad for some time about NASA's lack of progress in spaceflight. And yet I'm somehow in mourning over the end of the shuttle.
@incorrect initial value
Residual pressure in the CM-LM tunnel would have imparted a very small excess velocity indeed. I doubt however this effect, even if large enough to be noticeable to the astronauts when the craft separated, would have made much of a difference in the landing.
The trouble, IIRC, was that lunar orbit is not a smooth, easily predictable motion. Thanks to "masscons" (mass concentrations) one's orbit around the moon will speed up and slow down a little, depending on where you are. So choosing the exact time and position in lunar orbit for Apollo 11 to fire the engines and start the descent process was very hard. They used their best guess, and the result was a landing a bit downrange of where they wanted to be.
Neil Armstrong was understandably unhappy about this, despite his looking like a hero for landing safely anyway. He credits a NASA engineer, Emil Schiesser (sp?) with solving the problem (using analysis of radio frequency modulation as craft orbited the moon) in time for Apollo 12, where they made a near perfect, pinpoint landing.
"GO" for landing.
5 hours is a long time
I typically am logged into Eve less than 5 hours a day, so some players lost a day of play.
I logged on late last night Pacific USA time, and saw the note about the shutdown earlier in the day. Something not reported here was that there was a SECOND shutdown about (IIRC)10:30PM Pacific time, after things had been getting increasingly slow and laggy over the past hour. Another DDoS? Regardless, this time, about 15 min. after shutting down, Eve tranquility server came back up. I got a few minutes practically alone in the Eve universe, which was pretty cool.
"Last ever shuttle crew spacewalk"
I was sort of expecting to hear that one of the astronauts to deliver a Gene Cernan-esque speech upon completing the EVA. ("...we leave as we came and, God willing, as we shall return, with peace and hope for all mankind...")
Probably not, since 'nauts will continue to visit the ISS, just not using the shuttle anymore.
1. The Ancient Greeks were more right than they knew: Planet = "Wandering Star" indeed.
2. @John Smith: I favor the idea of an external force breaking a planet free of its star. Such as a rogue planet. Which would make the rogue planet generation mechanism resemble a nuclear fission reaction: split up one atom, let loose three extra neutrons that go and burst other atoms, freeing more neutrons, etc. Soon the universe will be uniformly filled with rogue planets, including our own.
The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.
>> It also does sweeping s-turns, probably to afford control over the distance traveled during the reentry.
The Shuttle needs to be banked so that the lift (= drag, stopping force, heat, etc.) is not applied too strongly or quickly. When banked, the vertical component of the lift vector is smaller, but there is now a sideways component which causes the orbiter to change course while re-entering. To stay on course they need to turn and bank the other direction some of the time, hence "S" curves.
As you said, this banking ability also provides the "cross range" capability, i.e., to land in the same place it took off, after just one orbit, as frequently mentioned in this website's articles about the X-37B.
Still have three old hp calculators
And I've only had 4 calculators since I was in high school*. All were hps. The 15c is in a box somewhere in the basement. The 28c...god I adored that one...I lost when I was an engineering student. And the 48SX I got as a replacement was larger, and somehow slower than the 28C, but that's the beast that carried me through the rest of university including grad school and I keep it handy even today.
Definitely the RPN entry method keeps the unworthy away from my calculators.
*I stole my little brother's 42S about 16 years ago and have it in the drawer next to me at work as I write this.
Great, now everyone who posted before you thinks they're a genius.
Great post, Mike.
This article, and your post, remind me of not one but two books by Neal Stephenson (novelist): Cryptonomicon (includes a bit about secret Nazi research) and the Baroque Cycle (various characters visit the Joachimsthaler mine, and yes, he mentions this place as the origin of "Dollar")
Beer, because it's finally Friday evening.
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