back to article Roscomos: We know all about how the hole in the Soyuz went down, but we're not telling you

While NASA splashing the cash on Orion modules may have grabbed the headlines, the fate of India's lander continued to perplex, assembly of the Space Launch System continued and Blighty pondered a Space Bridge. Structural assembly complete for core of monstrously delayed monster rocket The last of the five main sections that …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Space Bridge?

    Thought that needed technology we don't have yet.

    Also though officially H sapiens does not have interstellar technology it is possible at least in theory, using something very much like a 'Gate in terms of needing a system at both ends and with the additional restriction of needing to be aligned both in space and time. So to get say 4 light years out is simpler than 400, or 40,000 and a connection may only be possible for a few seconds every century or so.

    The base technology is similar to that used to entangle photons but using a lot more power and gravitational displacement effects similar to a countercurrent multiplier so it will work simply with extremely dense conventional matter moving very quickly.

    1. Benson's Cycle

      Re: Space Bridge?

      IIRC it has the slight disadvantage that it requires more energy than is available in the entire universe. Other than that, a doddle.

      1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
        Alert

        Re: Space Bridge?

        With all the strife he's under, it won't be long before Boris starts to support the idea.

        "When in doubt, erect a Boris bridge… "

        "Why do Boris Johnson’s distraction tactics always seem to involve unfeasible engineering projects?"

        https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/sep/15/boris-johnson-when-in-doubt-erect-another-bridge

        1. Benson's Cycle

          Re: Space Bridge?

          Because of Dunning-Kruger syndrome. Johnson thinks he's extremely clever, he knows nothing about science and engineering at all, therefore it's easy, therefore he is easily persuaded by would-be Elon Musks without the PayPal money.

        2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: Space Bridge?

          Given his performance in parliament yesterday, looks like Boris is now into burning bridges than building them

    2. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: Space Bridge?

      The base technology is

      I can't tell if you're making shit up or merely have an extremely poor understanding of an Einstein-Rosen bridge.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Space Bridge?

        Or?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Space Bridge?

          Very early in the morning, apologies.

          But yes the Einstein-Rosen bridge is only one of several topological defects that can result in a displacement between two points, although Roman Ring is a more complex form. This would be closer to a Krasnikov Tube than a classic ERB but still useful.

          Incidentally a Krasnikov Tube might have been responsible for the Wow! signal and this is what led me to my original hypothesis: advanced extraterrestrials may have constructed one many years ago to send radio signals and eventually more complex data to their sparse Bracewell probes.

          The aperture may simply be a matter of using gravitational fluctuations to "close off" a region of modified space time so that annoyances like causality loops are avoided with the bidirectional version, only ever opening for short times coinciding with alignment to the desired star system(s). Also making one tube which rotates in two axes may get around the absurd energy usage of constructing multiple tubes.

          1. Rich 11 Silver badge

            Re: Space Bridge?

            That's much clearer Thank you.

  2. Twanky Bronze badge
    Pint

    It was the first time the duo had been caught in the same frame.

    Erm... That picture was taken on 1977-09-18. The picture dubbed 'Earthrise' (https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/image_feature_1249.html) certainly shows the Moon and Earth in the same frame and was taken on 1968-12-24. It doesn't show the whole Moon - but then the Voyager photo only shows part of the Earth and Moon too. Anyway, they're both excellent pictures.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Re: It was the first time the duo had been caught in the same frame.

      And Ansel Adam's "Moon over Half Dome" is also a pretty shot, from late December 1960. Other photographers took landscape[0] shots with the moon included prior to that, back almost to the invention of photography. Arguably, all could be considered "the duo caught in the same frame".

      But really, we both know what was meant, right?

      [0] Yes, I know, it's in portrait orientation ... again, you know what I mean.

      1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: It was the first time the duo had been caught in the same frame.

        I think the unsaid assumption is they meant images where you weren't standing on one of the two at the time. Or at least the frame had to contain the whole of each.

        Otherwise anyone's holiday snaps which happened to have the moon in the sky would count...

        1. Twanky Bronze badge

          Re: It was the first time the duo had been caught in the same frame.

          Earthrise was not taken from the surface of the Moon. It was taken from Apollo 8. IIRC they weren't even in Moon orbit - they were on a free-return (to Earth) trajectory.

          oops. from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_8 'The crew orbited the Moon ten times over the course of twenty hours, during which they made a Christmas Eve television broadcast'.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    B-2 Test Stand

    I thought it was already operational?! Clearly, in peaceful cooperation with Russia ;)

  4. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

    Success rate

    Assuming the Indian lander failed in the last 2 km, given the distance in straight line to the moon you could argue it got 99.995% of the way, so 95-98% might even be argued to be a conservative estimate. This is not intended to knock the Indian effort, this is actual rocket science, and getting as far as they have is a huge achievement. If just one of the thousands of components fails in the hostile environment of space, things will go pear shaped very quickly indeed.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: Success rate

      Given that the rover's job was to study the regolith in the South Pole region, and that the results were highly anticipated by just about every space agency on the planet, I think that measuring success by the distance covered is wrong.

      You do not pass an exam by showing up at the school door.

      That the orbiter be credited with a 100% succes rate is fine, it is doing its job. But the mission had two components and one is DOA.

      The success rate for the mission is 50% at best.

      1. phuzz Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Success rate

        Hey now! They did a great job of studying the regolith!

        They have shown, one might almost say 'conclusively proved', that the lunar regolith is harder than a lunar lander. Of course nay-sayers will claim that we knew this already, but did we?

        OK, maybe we did, but they have at least proved that that particular bit of regolith is just as hard, and unsuitable for litho-braking, as the rest of the Moon.

        Now I hope everyone will contribute to my crowd funder to send probes to crash into every other bit of the Moon as well. In the hope that at least some of it turns out to actually be made out of marshmallow.

        1. seven of five
          Facepalm

          Re: Success rate

          "every other bit of the Moon as well. In the hope that at least some of it turns out to actually be made out of marshmallow."

          You *are* aware the moon is made from cheese, are you? ´tis well known... Cheese, not marshmallow.

          1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
            Headmaster

            Re: Success rate

            So look for the bits made of cream cheese? Or possibly Brie.

          2. KBeee
            Joke

            Re: Success rate

            As proved by that wonderful documentary "A Grand Day Out"

      2. jfw25

        Re: Success rate

        But what about all of the fuel which got the orbiter there? By weight, the mission is probably way over 99% successful...

      3. Raj

        Re: Success rate

        And you’re judging success by anticipated potential for discovery, which is just another subjective metric entirely based on unknowns. You cannot even offer a quantitative measure, just a probabilistic one.

        The rover weighs 27kg and has a design life of 14 days . The orbiter has a 2300kg weight and had an original design life of 1 year, since extended to almost 7 years due to the high precision of orbit injection . The lander got within a few hundred metres of lunar soil under perfect control before fine braking failed, having gotten that far with much greater accuracy than hoped for.

        Their relative weights and design lives offer a clue to their relative importance. While the rover might have been a great discoverer, it was never designed for much. The orbiter was and remains the main payload carrier and its own projected life has been enhanced almost an order of magnitude. The ISRO has very good cause to claim whatever percentage of success they chose to state .

        In related news, Mangalyaan-1 has completed 5 years in Mars orbit days ago, far more than its original goal, for similar reasons.

    2. Benson's Cycle
      Boffin

      Re: Success rate

      I have to remark that IIRC "going pear shaped" is a reference to observation balloons being shot down in WW1 - as they deflate the residual hydrogen rises to the top and the bottom starts to collapse.

      In space, going pear shaped is practically guaranteed not to happen. In the context of landing on another world with hardly any atmosphere, I suggest the word "splat" be used instead.

      1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

        Re: Pear shaped splat

        Rocket scientist already have some excellent terminology: The space probe performed a lithobraking manoeuvre followed by rapid unscheduled disassembly.

        1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: Pear shaped splat

          It would also mean we've been growing and holding pears upside down all these years.

          And I have to wonder if the term regolithobraking should be coined for this type of landing?

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