Shortly after takeoff
the cabin crew will pass amongst you with snacks and drinks.
NASA’s Mars-hopeful spacecraft Orion has successfully blasted off from Cape Canaveral on its first test flight, launching on time at 12.05pm GMT. Orion successfully launches on first test flight The agency’s first step towards reviving its manned space exploration programme went off without a hitch today, after a number of …
As I heard it, the american pint is actually the "wine" pint, or 1/8 of the old "wine gallon" which was a measurement used a few centuries ago. As the british standardized the pint after the revolution it makes sense that the US would stick with the older version.
"I thought one of their Mars probe failures was down to one team interpreting "m" as miles and another as metres leading to descent boosters being fired at the wrong time."
Are you sure you're not getting the Mars probe confused with Jimbo? :)
Are you seriously telling me that NASA still works in Fahrenheit these days?!
Welcome to the USA . The tea partly would never tolerate any of that sciency Celsius stuff . If Fahrenheit was good enough for my pappy and his pappy it's good enough for me. What are you some kind of commie ?
I can watch the launches from my back yard on a clear day (about 50km away) The best are the night launches because even at that distance it lights up the horizon like the sun coming up and you can follow the flame and see the boosters drop off with the naked eye.
The Americans don't have Europe to dictate what they can and can't do with their measurement systems. So they even use pounds and ounces. I still use feet and inches in preference - but at least we can still use miles. For now...
And anyway - I'm not the teensiest weeniest littlest bit jealous that you can see then from your back yard. No, really. Git!
The fight against metic has been going on since the seventies at least. Some money was spent on road signs in MPH and KMH. Huge reluctance to switch. The Union people ( absolutely not members of the Tea Party) are just as adamant against it. I was installing some equipment years ago and the Union Rigger asked me what height the feet needed to be set at. I said 50mm and he got his tools and left.
As a practical matter just think of the cost to change everything in the NASA data bases. It is just not cost effective. I am sure at some point it will have to be done but that is a long way off and it will be a huge and expensive project.
Don't have your snark radar on today do we? Go pound sand . Regardless of how long 'mericans have been fighting metric , the Tea party and the Republicans are vehemently anti science ...
and other "english" measurements because we were not stupid enough to fall for your "metric" ruse. The take up of metric is a conspiracy foisted on the rest of the world to gain a competitive advantage by forcing US manufacturers to change all their tooling. This would have cost the US trillions, and had no other benefit besides "similarity" of units.
Quite right. Its cost us a fortune here in Blighty too.
And the trouble is, to satisfy political correctness or whatever none of the kids at school get to learn anything about imperial units, let alone that a very substantial part of the world still uses them.
Including an awful lot of stuff here in the uk.
Still, working in tens is much easier. Or so I'm told. But don't tell the kids that. They still think they can add up (in tens) but usually can't. As for eights and sixteenths....
Anyways, you Merkins are heretics as well, with your mertic dollar. Years ago, when I was a lad, we had REAL money, pounds shillings and pence, but things like furniture, fridges and cars were sold in guineas. Used to confuse you lot no end.
Great post - my first (and only dog) cost 21 guineas - and race horses today are still sold using them.
Reminds me of that old quiz thing in the '70s that had questions relating to old money that added up to a total... i.e. pluto, neptune and saturn = 3 farthings etc.
PNGuinn, the reason we became monetarily heretical was because by the time the Treaty of Paris was signed, we had five different £sd systems in place among the states — as with regional measurement systems in many European countries, it was easier to adopt a new system than to reconcile all of the old ones. There were still $-to-£sd tables published into the 1850s, as people even then still tended to reckon in their state’s particular £sd system, and new states often adopted the system where their earliest anglophone colonists came from; Texas was the newest state that I’d seen with a $-to-£sd conversion rate (it followed the system of Virginia and New England).
I expect that NASA, in common with most of the international scientific community, work to metric and Celsius. But their PR department translates everything in releases to pander to American fondness for antiquated systems. Otherwise they're likely to be called communists, or something.
"There is. NASA are testing the giant space trampoline next month."
No good for anything on the surface. Plus the acceleration is limited to about 3-4Gs which means it has to be able to exert a lower force for a longer period of time and still get up to escape velocity. And since AFAWK imparting force on an object takes a reactive mass, we're kind of low on options.
0 Celsius is when water changes from being liquid to being solid.
100 Celsius is when water changes from being liquid to being a gas.
That´s at sea level.
Its the most precise measurement there is since water can not be compressed.
I prefer the english mile when it comes to distances but Celsius when talking about temperatures
Well, that is dodgy - bushel is a unit of dry volume - but the excellent 'units' program for *nix reveals:
You have: 29.2 tonnes%%
You want: bushels
You have: 29.2 tonnes
You want: ounces
%% struggled to actually get the weight of fuel here
Not Orion. That's not designed for ferry work to the ISS. And I'm not sure they're due to fly it again until they've built the new rocket to go with it.
NASA are paying Boeing and SpaceX for manned deliveries to the ISS. SpaceX unveiled the Dragon 2 about 3 months ago. I don't know when they plan to test it though. They've got all sorts of stuff to get done before they can get a whole stack man-rated.
There's still a few years to go of relying on Soyuz. Currently only China and Russia have anything they're willing to fly people in.
"Were the Three Degrees Fahrenheit or Celsius?"
yeah, that always gets me confused when people talk about six degrees of separation.
Anyway, back to the Fahrenheit scandal - this being El Reg, shouldn't we be using Vindaloos as the unit of re-entry hotness...
China is set on the Moon, India seems to be set on Mars.
Prior to those objectives, the US was doing long term biomes and the Russians were investigating year long zero g both of which could have been focused on the roughly 9 month trip to Mars.
But how come no-one's tried Venus?
...bicker about temperature scales, units of weight or measurement, or vaccuum packed sheep, as many fine commentards before me have that covered in some depth, I'll just say that I'm starting to get really excited about the planned moon mission that is just a few years away. A manned mission to Mars I'm not quite ready to believe in just yet.
The technology improvements should ensure some amazing lunar video feeds and absolutely spectacular photography. The only bit I'm not excitied about is the inevitable "Mans first tweet/farcebook post from the moon".
Well done NASA - lets hope this is the first of many successful launches!
Isn't it a shame that they called it "Orion"?
As far as I am aware "Orion" was the name given to the concept of nuclear pulse propulsion where a rocket would be propelled by small nuclear explosions "pushing" on a plate at the back of the craft.
Has anybody read Larry Niven's "Footfall"? An Orion craft spearheads the best space battle I have ever read.
"Footfall" is a read that goes into your brain and never leaves your unconsciousness. More of a horror than sci-fi. "Raumpatrouille Orion" (1962)was a sci-fi series and a german prodcution. Pre Star Trek(1963), in black in white. A must see, even if it is in german. For the germans "Orion" is a spacecraft that goes beyond borders.
should a space vehicle come back to earth once it´s up there? What about a modular system? First you send unmanned habitats to mars. Then you send fuel modules and a landing module into an orbit around Mars. A launch system to Mars. Then you shoot the astronauts in that radiation hardened box into an orbit to Mars and they dock to the landing module circling the planet. Once they are done with planting their Stars and Stripes Banner ( well, that scene could be easily captured in a Hollywood Studio) they walk over to the launch module and lift off into Mars orbit and connect to the fuel module and their radiation hardened box which gives them enough umph to enter into an Earth orbit. Some of these russian capsules come to pick them up there and bring the astronauts safely home by parasuit. The main obsticale of space faring is to overcome Earth´s gravitation and reentry into the atmosphere. Both seem to be overcome since at least 40 years. But again, why should a spacecraft, once its up there have to come back to Earth? There is no need of heatshielding a Spacecaft for example. Repairs and resupply can be done "cheaply" in orbit. No need to send another manned vehicle to intersolar exploration with all this expensive stuff all the time. I would really like to discuss this.
Seconded, why? Orion in this article at least is billed as something for going to Mars. I've seen NASA videos suggesting a return to the moon using Orion, and a trip to Mars using it. But it's got return-to-earth heatshielding, so it's clearly (also? instead?) good for returning from (say) the ISS to earth.
That doesn't make it a ship for going to the moon or Mars. The notion of several vehicles seems to have been forgotten along the way. What about Buzz Aldrin's Mars Recycler concept?
Which all leads me to believe that Orion is just an overpriced earth orbit round trip crew container, and all the rest was added to get the funding. It will never go to the moon, never mind Mars. Or Venus, for those still keen.
Still waiting on a material that can reliably handle being flung about the planet while able to handle the massive tension needed to make it viable under working conditions (mostly its own weight). Have you ever measured a 25,000-mile-long piece of string? That's below the LOW end of the weight involved.
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