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#1 SCFalken

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 2331 PM

http://www.space.com...oon_metric.html

NASA will go metric on moon operations.

About time, conversion is a bitch (hear that, Mars Climate Orbiter team???).


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#2 SCFalken

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Posted 09 January 2007 - 2333 PM

http://www.physorg.c...ws87486333.html

Detection of Earth-like Civilizations in Space Now Possible.


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#3 X-Files

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 0848 AM

Gerry Anderson's got new fodder.

Britain plans first Moon mission
By Pallab Ghosh
BBC science correspondent
http://news.bbc.co.u...ure/6246513.stm

The UK could soon have its first mission to the Moon - an orbiting spacecraft that would fire instruments into the lunar surface.
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#4 Jim Martin

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 0934 AM

If alien broadcasts were detected, additional observations could measure characteristics of the source planet, such as how fast it rotates or how long its year is. By combining that information with knowledge of the parent star, astronomers could estimate the temperature on the planet's surface to assess whether it may have liquid water and life as we know it....


...and is therefore suitable for conquest and subjugation of its inhabitants as our slaves in the underground cocaine mines...
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#5 TSJ

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 1115 AM

...and is therefore suitable for conquest and subjugation of its inhabitants as our slaves in the underground cocaine mines...


Obviously, you have not passed this plan by Lord Chillihu or whutever his devoted followers call him.
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#6 Guest_aevans_*

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 1243 PM

http://www.physorg.c...ws87486333.html

Detection of Earth-like Civilizations in Space Now Possible.
Falken


If there are 1,000 currently active, RF transmitting civilizations in the galaxy right now, they are about 3,000 ly appart, on the average. This technology hopes at best to detect civilizations 300 ly away. IOW, the answer to the Fermi Paradox may simply be that we don't have the tools to find out.
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#7 SCFalken

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 1408 PM

If there are 1,000 currently active, RF transmitting civilizations in the galaxy right now, they are about 3,000 ly appart, on the average. This technology hopes at best to detect civilizations 300 ly away. IOW, the answer to the Fermi Paradox may simply be that we don't have the tools to find out.



That's assuming a mathematically even galactic spread. Also that they are single-system civilizations, which is not a safe bet, as a spacefaring civilization would likely/possibly be spread across (several) dozen LY, barring the possibility of FTL travel.

We've got no working evidence at all (other than the lack of evidence), so everything is just guesswork at this point. Hell, they might not even be using radio transmissions.

Still, it is a worthwhile attempt. At least we'll be able to eliminate (for certain categories of evidence) the local area.


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Edited by SCFalken, 10 January 2007 - 1414 PM.

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#8 Guest_aevans_*

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Posted 10 January 2007 - 1436 PM

That's assuming a mathematically even galactic spread. Also that they are single-system civilizations, which is not a safe bet, as a spacefaring civilization would likely/possibly be spread across (several) dozen LY, barring the possibility of FTL travel.

We've got no working evidence at all (other than the lack of evidence), so everything is just guesswork at this point. Hell, they might not even be using radio transmissions.

Still, it is a worthwhile attempt. At least we'll be able to eliminate (for certain categories of evidence) the local area.
Falken


I did say "on the average", and there's no reason to presume that we're favorably positioned, in a statistical sense. Also, even if a civilization does manage to spread to neighboring star systems while it is still radiating RF, even a footprint 100 ly in radius is a marginal improvement over 3,000 ly. Heck, let's say the average distribution is 1,000 ly -- that's still better than three times the foreseen detection range.

I didn't say it wasn't a worthwhile line of investigation, but all that it can tell us is that we're either very unfavorably positioned for purposes of contact with RF radiating civilizations, or that the maximum average density of such civilizations is relatively low.
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#9 TSJ

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 1831 PM

NASA funds fall short by over $500 million. More science projects likely to get the axe. Or else the Orion project could be delayed causing more than a 4 year launch gap from the end of the space shuttle.

According to NASAWatch.com, Griffin is committed to completion of the ISS, then Orion, then anything else will have to either fit into the remaining bucket or be cut.

Here is a chron.com article:

http://chron.com/dis...nt/4469196.html
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#10 X-Files

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 2057 PM

"Have you seen the Oscillation Overthruster?"

Graduate students and faculty researchers at The University of Alabama in Huntsville are investigating propulsion concepts that could eventually revolutionize deep space travel. The Plasmoid Thruster Experiment (PTX) is a stepping stone to a highly efficient propulsion concept which could ultimately change how we travel in space, according to Dr. Jason Cassibry, a researcher in UAH’s Propulsion Research Center.

http://physorg.com/news87663676.html



The most powerful camera ever sent into orbit around Mars has spotted yet another lander lying lifeless on its surface: Mars Pathfinder, which operated for three months in 1997. It may also have found the mission's tiny rover, Sojourner, which appears to have crawled towards Pathfinder after the lander had already died.

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), which arrived at the planet in March 2006, has previously spotted four spacecraft on the planet's surface – the current rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, and the twin 30-year-old Viking landers.

http://space.newscie...lost-rover.html

Edited by X-Files, 14 January 2007 - 2100 PM.

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#11 TSJ

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 1615 PM

From NASA Watch, a link to Reuters, expensive new spy satellite not working:

http://today.reuters...C1-ArticlePage2

Edited by TSJ, 15 January 2007 - 1616 PM.

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#12 SCFalken

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 1848 PM

Griffin Speaks!

http://www.nasa.gov/...hy_explore.html

Why Explore Space?

01.18.07


By Michael Griffin
Administrator
National Aeronautics and Space Administration

As NASA resumes flights of the space shuttle to finish building the International Space Station, many are questioning whether the project – the most complex construction feat ever undertaken – is worth the risk and expense.


Image above: Artist's concept of the Orion crew vehicle in lunar orbit. Credit: Lockheed Martin Corp.

+ Constellation Program | + Vision for Space Exploration
+ Lunar Surface Animation
I have been asked, and asked myself, this question many times during my career, particularly when the United States lacked a plan to go beyond the space station to other destinations in the solar system.

The issue was addressed eloquently in the report of the Columbia Accident Investigation Board, which examined the 2003 loss of the shuttle and its crew. That report pointed out that for the foreseeable future, space travel is going to be expensive, difficult and dangerous. But, for the United States, it is strategic. It is part of what makes us a great nation. And the report declared that if we are going to send humans into space, the goals ought to be worthy of the cost, the risk and the difficulty. A human spaceflight program with no plan to send people anywhere beyond the orbiting space station certainly did not meet that standard.

President Bush responded to the Columbia report. The administration looked at where we had been in space and concluded that we needed to do more, to go further. The result was the Vision for Space Exploration, announced nearly three years ago, which commits the United States to using the shuttle to complete the space station, then retiring the shuttle and building a new generation of spacecraft to venture out into the solar system. Congress has ratified that position with an overwhelming bipartisan majority, making the Vision for Space Exploration the law of the land.

"I believe America should look to its future – and consider what that future will look like if we choose not to be a spacefaring nation."
--NASA Administrator Michael Griffin
Today, NASA is moving forward with a new focus for the manned space program: to go out beyond Earth orbit for purposes of human exploration and scientific discovery. And the International Space Station is now a stepping stone on the way, rather than being the end of the line.

On the space station, we will learn how to live and work in space. We will learn how to build hardware that can survive and function for the years required to make the round-trip voyage from Earth to Mars.

If humans are indeed going to go to Mars, if we're going to go beyond, we have to learn how to live on other planetary surfaces, to use what we find there and bend it to our will, just as the Pilgrims did when they came to what is now New England – where half of them died during that first frigid winter in 1620. There was a reason their celebration was called "Thanksgiving."


The Pilgrims were only a few thousand miles from home, and they were accomplished farmers and artisans. And yet, when they came to an unfamiliar land, they didn’t know how to survive in its harsh environment. They didn’t know what food would grow and what wouldn’t. They didn’t know what they could eat and what they couldn't.

Image above: The International Space Station, the most complex construction feat ever undertaken, will teach us how to live and work in space.

+ International Space Station
The Pilgrims had to learn to survive in a strange new place across a vast ocean. If we are to become a spacefaring nation, the next generation of explorers is going to have to learn how to survive in other forbidding, faraway places across the vastness of space. The moon is a crucially important stepping stone along that path – an alien world, yet one that is only a three-day journey from Earth.

Using the space station and building an outpost on the moon to prepare for the trip to Mars are critical milestones in America's quest to become a truly spacefaring nation. I think that we should want that. I want that. I want it for the American people, for my grandchildren, for my great-grandchildren.

Throughout history, the great nations have been the ones at the forefront of the frontiers of their time. Britain became great in the 17th century through its exploration and mastery of the seas. America's greatness in the 20th century stemmed largely from its mastery of the air. For the next generations, the frontier will be space.

Other countries will explore the cosmos, whether the United States does or not. And those will be Earth's great nations in the years and centuries to come. I believe America should look to its future – and consider what that future will look like if we choose not to be a spacefaring nation.


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#13 SCFalken

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 1914 PM

FYI, SpaceX has scheduled this Sunday (21st) for the 2nd Falcon 1 shot. DARPA picking up the tab again.

Luck to them.

Falken

Edited by SCFalken, 18 January 2007 - 1916 PM.

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#14 pikachu

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 0830 AM

"Have you seen the Oscillation Overthruster?"

Graduate students and faculty researchers at The University of Alabama in Huntsville are investigating propulsion concepts that could eventually revolutionize deep space travel. The Plasmoid Thruster Experiment (PTX) is a stepping stone to a highly efficient propulsion concept which could ultimately change how we travel in space, according to Dr. Jason Cassibry, a researcher in UAH’s Propulsion Research Center.

http://physorg.com/news87663676.html


Friggin' hell! I spent three of my grad school years working on PPTs. Cool little buggers, but hardly efficient. I can't even imagine how they'd scale it up. The PPTs I worked with had solid teflon for propellant. The teflon is ablated and gases released (various C, H, F, and O compounds) are accelerated using Lorentz force via the two accel plates on the walls of the exhaust aperture. Better thrust ratio than ion thrusters due to propellant mass and Lorentz-based acceleration, but still a typical electric thruster. The Isp drops off with increasing aperture size and the thrust ratio gets more and more ridiculous as you increase the mass. It's actually more efficient when built small. Someone I knew was building PPTs the size of ballpoint pen tips. Unless they come up with some sort of superefficient design or change the fuel the only way I can think of to upscale the thing is to make clusters of tiny little PPTs and shoot them off together (which is hard to do because they're pulsed).
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#15 savantu

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 0848 AM

http://www.space.com...oon_metric.html

NASA will go metric on moon operations.

About time, conversion is a bitch (hear that, Mars Climate Orbiter team???).
Falken


About time....Still waiting for the US to see the light :P
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#16 X-Files

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 0858 AM

http://www.spaceref....ws.html?id=1188

U. S. intelligence agencies believe China performed a successful anti-satellite (asat) weapons test at more than 500 mi. altitude Jan. 11 destroying an aging Chinese weather satellite target with a kinetic kill vehicle launched on board a ballistic missile.

The Central Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency, NASA and other government organizations have a full court press underway to obtain data on the alleged test, Aviation Week & Space Technology reports on its web site Aviationnow.com.

If the test is verified it will signify a major new Chinese military capability.

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http://www.angelfire...perialMarch.wav
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#17 TSJ

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 0927 AM

The debris field from the Chinese test will stay in orbit up to 10 years. :angry:
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#18 John Nelson

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 2110 PM

FYI, SpaceX has scheduled this Sunday (21st) for the 2nd Falcon 1 shot. DARPA picking up the tab again.

Luck to them.

Falken


Thanks for the update. Haven't been to their site in a while. I'll keep my fingers crossed.

Ah, here are some updates on their site:
http://www.spacex.com/

Posted January 17, 2007

DemoFlight 2 Launch Update


The static fire has moved to Friday (California time) and launch to Monday, January 22. We have not encountered any new issues – the shift in timing is primarily to provide for additional risk reduction activities on site, as we continue to operate with a healthy paranoia.

As stated in the prior update, there is a high likelihood that the dates will continue to change, given the broad array of vehicle robustness upgrades. This will remain true all the way up to the final few seconds of the countdown, as our new health verification software executes hundreds of systems checks between engine ignition at T-3 sec and liftoff at T-0, when the hold down clamps release the rocket for flight. This is a critical phase for verification, given that the vehicle will have undergone substantial state changes throughout the first stage and avionics system.


--Elon--


Posted January 19, 2007

DemoFlight 2 Launch Update


During our final check-outs prior to static fire, we uncovered an anomaly with the thrust vector control (TVC) pitch actuator on the second stage that will result in launch being pushed to February. Since this is not used during the static fire, we have decided to push forward with that test in order to acquire valuable data on engine ignition, pad acoustics, and the overall system response. The static fire is now planned to occur between Saturday and Tuesday (California time). This test will proceed very slowly and then only burns for about four seconds, so will not be webcast to avoid boring people silly. We will post a video afterwards.



Upon completion of the static fire, we will take the rocket back into the hangar to thoroughly investigate the TVC issue. With the range available to us only until January 23 (Kwaj[alein] needs to reconfigure for an incoming Minuteman mission), this means launch is now planned for mid-February. As I’ve mentioned previously, don’t hold your breath for this launch. Given the large number of robustness improvements and the fact that our vehicle/pad health verification system has increased from about 30 checks to almost 1000, shifts in the launch date are to be expected. Overall, the SpaceX team is quite happy with the smooth progress so far.



--Elon--


Elon being Elon Musk, the founder of PayPal, who is building this private orbital rocket.
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#19 X-Files

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Posted 26 January 2007 - 1546 PM

Mars Is Warming, NASA Scientists Report
Data coincide with increasing solar output
Written By: James M. Taylor
Published In: Environment News
Publication Date: November 1, 2005
Publisher: The Heartland Institute

The planet Mars is undergoing significant global warming, new data from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) show, lending support to many climatologists' claims that the Earth's modest warming during the past century is due primarily to a recent upsurge in solar energy.

http://www.heartland...cfm?artId=17977
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#20 Jim Martin

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Posted 27 January 2007 - 0946 AM

Mars Is Warming, NASA Scientists Report
Data coincide with increasing solar output
Written By: James M. Taylor
Published In: Environment News
Publication Date: November 1, 2005
Publisher: The Heartland Institute

The planet Mars is undergoing significant global warming, new data from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) show, lending support to many climatologists' claims that the Earth's modest warming during the past century is due primarily to a recent upsurge in solar energy.

http://www.heartland...cfm?artId=17977


Where are the Kyoto apologists???

The world wonders....
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