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   PastimesSpace and Space Exploration


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From: TimF6/12/2019 8:32:35 AM
1 Recommendation   of 2251
 

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From: TimF6/13/2019 12:56:17 PM
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From: FUBHO6/25/2019 12:43:07 AM
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SpaceX is targeting Monday, June 24 for a Falcon Heavy launch of the STP-2 mission from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The primary launch window opens at 11:30 p.m. EDT, or 3:30 UTC on June 25, and closes at 3:30 a.m.

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To: FUBHO who wrote (2191)6/25/2019 2:23:16 AM
From: FUBHO
   of 2251
 
Falcon Heavy’s side boosters for the STP-2 mission previously supported the Arabsat-6A mission in April 2019. Following booster separation, Falcon Heavy’s two side boosters will attempt to land at SpaceX’s Landing Zones 1 and 2 (LZ-1 and LZ-2) at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Falcon Heavy’s center core will attempt to land on the “Of Course I Still Love You” droneship, which will be stationed in the Atlantic Ocean.

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From: TimF6/26/2019 2:15:08 PM
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What if Apollo had crashed on the Moon ?

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From: TimF6/26/2019 9:28:43 PM
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*The Case for Space*
by Tyler Cowen
June 11, 2019

The author is Robert Zubrin and the subtitle is How the Revolution in Spaceflight Opens Up a Future of Limitless Possibility. I found this book fun, ambitious, and informative, even if I was not entirely convinced. Zubrin thinks big and bold in an exciting way, here is one bit:
Exploring Mars requires no miraculous new technologies, no orbiting spaceports, and no gigantic interplanetary space cruisers. We can establish our first small outpost on Mars within a decade.
There is not much talk of the stress space (or for that matter life on Mars) might place on the human body. Zubrin talks of Mars tours of four or six years or more.

Yet my biggest difference with Zubrin is this: I think of space and planetary exploration as presenting many surprising and difficult problems, ones which cannot be foreseen and fixed in advance by stocking a spacecraft with “just the right materials.” There are many sentences like this:
Mobile microwave units will be used to extract water from Mars’s abundant permafrost, supporting such agriculture and making possible the manufacture of large amounts of brick and concrete…
But when the problem of missing parts arises, or perhaps missing links between systems, you can’t run to the local hardware store. Try this one too:
Extracting the He3 from the atmospheres of the giant planets will be difficult, but not impossible. What is required is a winged transatmospheric vehicle that can use a planet’s atmosphere for propellant, heating it in a nuclear reactor to produce thrust.
My other worry is that if we do not find it profitable to inhabit rural Nevada, Mars might stay empty as well. Zubrin does make a detailed economic case for the value of space, though to my eye much of it falls on satellites. Asteroids have valuable minerals, such as uranium, and that might spur mining operations, powered by nuclear fusion. But is that really the cheapest way to get more uranium, in any case I suspect its price and value would fall rapidly with quantity.

Zubrin puts forward the interesting hypothesis that life in space will encourage a great deal of political freedom:
Historically, the easiest people for a tyrant to oppress are nominally self-sufficient rural peasants, because none of them are individually essential…In a space colony, nearly everyone will be individually essential, and therefore powerful, and all will be capable of being dangerous to those in authority.
Hard to verify, but worth a ponder.

Under another scenario, arks full of large, smart salamanders, genetically programmed to build incubators by instinct, will settle the galaxy at “a speed exceeding 20 percent the speed of light.”

There are many interesting ancillary points, such as using the length of the growing season to estimate global warming, or how pp.284-285 offer an ambitious take on the spin-off benefits from the space program so far, or pp.294-295 on exactly why taking out an asteroid with bombs is so hard.

With plenty of caveats of course, but recommended, the author of this one is never coasting.

marginalrevolution.com

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From: TimF6/27/2019 5:33:12 PM
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A Howling Cosmic Signal Came From a Faraway Galaxy
Astronomers get closer to understanding one of the most perplexing phenomena in the universe.
Marina Koren 2:00 PM ET

They never would have found it if Tony hadn’t gotten sick.

In September, astronomers were scanning the night sky with a radio telescope in Australia. They were looking for mysterious, powerful signals that originate well beyond the Milky Way and deep in space. Thousands of these signals, known as fast radio bursts, or FRBs, reach the planet each day, but they’re not easy to detect. The signals arrive without warning, flash for a few milliseconds, and then vanish.

The astronomers had anticipated catching at least a few bursts. Two weeks into the effort, they hadn’t detected anything, and it was time to turn the telescope over to other researchers. Disappointed, the team prepared to hand the reins back to Tony Maher, one of the telescope managers. But Maher, they were told, was out with a cold.

“So I said, ‘Why don’t I just take it for another 24 hours until Tony gets back?’” says Keith Bannister, a research engineer at the Australia Telescope National Facility who led the team. “And then 2 a.m. that morning, all hell broke loose.”

They got one.

The discovery, published today in Science, brings the tally of known FRBs to more than 80. A second team is working on a similar discovery, too—an enticing prospect for a burgeoning field with more questions than answers. Despite the growing catalog, astronomers are missing a crucial piece of information: what, exactly, produces these things.

The first known FRBs, detected about a decade ago, were so unusual that astronomers suspected the signals were noise from telescope instruments. By the time the bursts approach Earth, they have traveled for billions of years across the cosmic expanse, and yet they arrive not as faint whispers, but as screeching howls. The energy in these momentary bursts can outshine the entire sun. A leading theory on their origins suggests that the pulses erupt from magnetars, star remnants with tremendously powerful magnetic fields.

The astronomers were thrilled about detecting another FRB, a rare enough triumph. But even more exciting was what they were able to discover about its origins.

The telescope they used is actually a collection of 36 individual dish-shaped antennae spread out across a patch of desert in Australia. The antennae jut out of the scarlet-colored terrain like mushrooms, rotating their tops toward different parts of the sky. When an FRB washes over Earth, the signal hits every dish at a slightly different time. “We can measure those times very accurately, down to a fraction of a billionth of a second,” Bannister says. His team stitched these measurements together to triangulate the source of the burst.

With the cosmic coordinates in hand, the researchers wrangled other telescopes around the world to check out that spot. Sure enough, they found something: a galaxy, slightly smaller than our own, about 4 billion light-years away. This particular FRB, named 180924, for the date of its discovery, erupted from this distant place long, long before a curious civilization built the technology to find it.

Bannister explains the precision of the discovery this way: “It’s like looking at the Earth from the moon and not only knowing what house a person lived in, but what chair they were sitting in at the dining-room table.”

This is only the second time astronomers have managed to pinpoint the source of one of these signals. The other FRB, known as 121102, is regarded as quite special in the field; it’s the rare signal that has been known to appear more than once, always from the same bit of sky—sometimes several times in less than a minute. Astronomers traced its source to a galaxy about 3 billion light-years away last year.

Most FRBs, though, are one-off events, and identifying their source right away is a significant achievement. “This is a very big leap,” says Sarah Burke Spolaor, an astronomer at West Virginia University who studies FRBs and was not involved in the research.

The finding stands to shake up current theories. The earlier, 121102 burst originated in a small galaxy that seemed to be churning out stars. Massive stars exploded in dazzling supernovas, a process that gave rise to new stars and left behind magnetars. That kind of environment seemed like the perfect place to manufacture energetic mysteries such as FRBs. But the home galaxy of 180924 is larger and sleepier. “It’s not really doing that much, and yet it can produce FRBs,” Bannister says. The bursts might be coming from two different types of cosmic objects, each cataclysmic enough to send radio waves streaking across the universe.

Even as the most fundamental properties of FRBs remain hidden, more detections could bring astronomers closer to answering an entirely different cosmic conundrum: what the universe is made of. To telescopes, FRBs appear smudged across a range of frequencies, a distortion that suggests something slowed them down between galaxies. They seem to bear the marks of intergalactic matter, something astronomers know little about.

“The interstellar medium between stars in our galaxy is a better vacuum than the vacuums we have in labs, and the intergalactic medium is orders of magnitude emptier than even that,” says Shami Chatterjee, an astrophysicist at Cornell University who studies FRBs and was not involved in the new research. “But there is some material there, and there’s so much intergalactic space that it adds up.”

It adds up quite a bit: Even with all the planets, stars, and galaxies, most of the composition of the universe remains unknown. FRBs could serve as beacons, studded with clues, to illuminate the depths.

theatlantic.com

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From: FUBHO6/29/2019 12:25:37 AM
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phys.org

New property of light discovered


5-6 minutes







Credit: CC0 Public Domain

A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in Spain and the U.S. has announced that they have discovered a new property of light—self-torque. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes how they happened to spot the new property and possible uses for it.

Scientists have long known about such properties of light as wavelength. More recently, researchers have found that light can also be twisted, a property called angular momentum. Beams with highly structured angular momentum are said to have orbital angular momentum (OAM), and are called vortex beams. They appear as a helix surrounding a common center, and when they strike a flat surface, they appear as doughnut-shaped. In this new effort, the researchers were working with OAM beams when they found the light behaving in a way that had never been seen before.

The experiments involved firing two lasers at a cloud of argon gas—doing so forced the beams to overlap, and they joined and were emitted as a single beam from the other side of the argon cloud. The result was a type of vortex beam. The researchers then wondered what would happen if the lasers had different orbital angular momentum and if they were slightly out of sync. This resulted in a beam that looked like a corkscrew with a gradually changing twist. And when the beam struck a flat surface, it looked like a crescent moon. The researchers noted that looked at another way, a single photon at the front of the beam was orbiting around its center more slowly than a photon at the back of the beam. The researchers promptly dubbed the new property self-torque—and not only is it a newly discovered property of light, it is also one that has never even been predicted.

A new property of light beams, the self-torque of light, which is associated to a temporal variation of the orbital angular momentum. Extreme-ultraviolet ultrafast pulses with self-torque are generated through high harmonic generation. Credit: JILA (USA) Rebecca Jacobson, Servicio de Produccion e Innovacion Digital – Universidad de Salamanca (Spain) The researchers suggest that it should be possible to use their technique to modulate the orbital angular momentum of light in ways very similar to modulating frequencies in communications equipment. This could lead to the development of novel devices that make use of manipulating extremely tiny materials.


More information: Laura Rego et al. Generation of extreme-ultraviolet beams with time-varying orbital angular momentum, Science (2019). DOI: 10.1126/science.aaw9486

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From: FUBHO6/29/2019 9:39:57 AM
   of 2251
 
Volcanic Eruption Spotted From SpacePublished on June 28, 2019

Written by Tim Binnall



Astronauts aboard the International Space Station captured a breathtaking image of a massive volcanic eruption that occurred over the weekend.

The amazing photograph was snapped on Saturday morning when the ISS passed over the uninhabited volcanic island Raikoke as it rumbled to life and unleashed an enormous plume of ash and smoke into the sky.

According to a post from NASA, volcanic monitoring stations measure the height of the plume to be around 8 to 10 miles.

Thanks to the remarkable timing of the flyover, the astronauts were able to capture the eruption as it was seemingly nearing its peak, taking on an eerie mushroom cloud-like shape. The space agency explained that the top of the plume is known as the ‘umbrella region’ and consists of dense ash rife with “sharp fragments of rock and volcanic glass.” Noting the curious rings which formed at the base of the plume, NASA suggested that those features are probably water vapor clouds.

[PSI Editor’s note: Recent research shows that the volume of volcanic CO2 currently being emitted into Earth’s atmosphere is far greater than previously calculated, challenging the validity of the man-made global warming theory]

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From: FUBHO6/30/2019 1:30:57 PM
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go-astronomy.com

Moons Of All The Planets

Know all 203 known moons of all the planets in our solar system? Well here they are! Every so often new moons are discovered for the outer dwarf planets. (m = visual magnitude)

? Mercury Moons = 0Mercury is too close to the Sun to hold on to a moon.

? Venus Moons = 0Venus may have had a moon in the distant past, which collided with another object and then impacted Venus.

? Earth Moons = 1Earth has several quasi-satellites - asteroid 2016 HO3 is the closest with the most stable orbit.


Luna
(-12.9m)


? Mars Moons = 2Both moons of Mars may be captured asteroids, and can be viewed in small (4-inch) telescopes.


Deimos
(12.4m)


Phobos
(11.3m)


? Dwarf Ceres Moons = 0Ceres is the only dwarf planet located in the asteroid belt and has no moons surprisingly. A number of asteroids (also called minor planets) do have moons.

? Jupiter Moons = 79Moons of Jupiter are listed in order of size. The first 4 moons listed, the Galilean moons, are viewable naked eye under dark skies, while Amalthea can be be viewed in 8- to 10-inch telescopes.


Ganymede
(4.61m)


Callisto
(5.65m)


Io
(5.02m)


Europa
(5.29m)



Amalthea
(14.1m)


Himalia
(16.77m)


Thebe
(15.7m)


Elara
(16.77m)



Pasiphae


Metis


Carme


Sinope



Lysithea


Ananke


Leda


Themisto



Praxidike


Locaste


Kalyke


Megaclite



Taygete


Callirrhoe


Autonoe


Harpalyke



Thyone


Hermippe


Chaldene


Aoede



Eukalade


Isonoe


Helike


Carpo



S/2003 J5


S/2000 J11


Aitne


Eurydome



Hegomone


Arche


Euanthe


Sponde



S/2003 J2


s/2003 J9


Euporie


Thelxinoe



S/2003 J3


S/2003 J18


Erinome


Pasithee



Kore


Cyllene


Mneme


Kale



Kallichore


S/2003 J16


S/2003 J19


S/2003 J15



S/2003 J10


S/2003 J23


S/2011 J2


S/2010 J1



S/2003 J4


S/2011 J1


S/2010 J2


S/2016 J1



Valetudo


S/2019 J1


S/2019 J2


S/2019 J3



S/2019 J4


S/2019 J5


S/2019 J6


S/2019 J7



S/2019 J8


S/2019 J9


S/2019 J1


? Saturn Moons = 62Moons of Saturn are listed in order of size. The first four moons are viewable with good binoculars and the next four moons with a 4- to 8-inch telescope. Saturn also has hundreds to thousands of moonlets embedded in its ring system.


Titan
(8.28m)


Rhea
(9.7m)


Iapetus
(10-12m)


Dione
(10.4m)



Tethys
(10.2m)


Enceladus
(11.7m)


Mimas
(12.9m)


Hyperion
(14.2m)



Phoebe


Janus


Epimetheus


Prometheus



Pandora


Siarnaq


Helene


Albiorix



Atlas


Pan


Telesto


Paaliaq



Calypso


Ymir


Kiviuq


Tarvos



Ijiraq


Erriapo


Skathi


Hyrrokkin



Tarqeq


Narvi


Mundilfari


Suttungr



Thymr


Bestla


Kari


Bergelmir



Greip


Jarnsaxa


Skoll


Bebhionm



Hati


Aegir


Surtur


Loge



Fornjot


Farbauti


Fenrir


Methone



Polydueces


Pallene


Aegaeon


Anthe



S/2004 S13


S/2006 S1


S/2004 S17


S/2004 S12


S/2007 S2


S/2007 S3


S/2004 S7


S/2006 S3

? Uranus Moons = 27Moons of Uranus are listed in order of size. The first 4 moons can be viewed in medium-sized (8- to 10-inch) telescopes.


Titania
(13.7m)


Oberon
(13.9m)


Umbriel
(14.8m)


Ariel
(14.16m)



Miranda


Sycorax


Puck


Portia



Juliet


Caliban


Belinda


Cressida



Rosalind


Desdemona


Bianca


Ophelia



Cordelia


Perdita


Prospero


Setebos



Mab


Stephano


Cupid


Francisco



Ferdinand


Margeret


Trinculo


? Neptune Moons = 14Moons of Neptune are listed in order of size. Triton is viewable using a medium-sized (8-inch) telescope. Triton is believed to be a dwarf planet from the Kuiper Belt captured by Neptune.


Triton
(13.4m)


Proteus
(19.7m)


Nereid
(19.2m)


Larissa
(21.5m)



Galatea
(21.9m)


Despina
(22.0m)


Thalassa
(23.3m)


Naiad
(23.9m)



Halimede
(24.5m)


Neso
(24.6m)


Sao
(25.4m)


Laomedeia
(25.4m)



Psamathe
(25.6m)


Hippocamp
(26.5m)


- KUIPER BELT REGION -? Dwarf Pluto Moons = 5Moons of Pluto are listed in order of size. Pluto and Charon are considered a binary dwarf planet system. None of the moons are visible in any amateur telescope. Pluto however, at current magnitude 14, is viewable in 10-inch and larger telescopes.


Charon
(16.8m)


Hydra
(23.3m)


Nix
(23.7m)


Kerberos
(26m)



Styx
(27m)


Dwarf Orcus Moons = 1

Orcus w/ Vanth


Dwarf Haumea Moons = 2

Haumea w/
Hi'iaka, Namaka


Dwarf Quaoar Moons = 1

Quaoar w/ Weywot


Dwarf Makemake Moons = 1

Makemake w/ S/2015


Dwarf 2007 OR10 Moons = 1

2007 OR10 w/ moon

Dwarf Eris Moons = 1

Eris w/ Dysnomia


Dwarf Salacia Moons = 1

Salacia w/ Actaea


- INNER OORT CLOUD REGION -
Planets here are in very elongated orbits that go from the Kuiper Belt out to the inner edge of the Oort Cloud. Several dwarf planets out there are believed to be perturbed by Planet 9, thought to be a mini-Neptune planet at 10X Earth mass. It's existence is highly probable but not yet confirmed.

PLANET 2012 VP113(Dwarf) 0 moons


PLANET SEDNA(Dwarf) 0 moons


"THE GOBLIN"(Dwarf) 0 moons

PLANET "CAJU"(Dwarf) 0 moons


PLANET "FAROUT"(Dwarf) 0 moons


PLANET 9 ?(unconfirmed)

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